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'East Side Sushi'
(Diana Torres, Yutaka Takeuchi, Rodrigo Clark, Kaya Aguirre, et al / DVD / PG / (2014) 2016 / Sony Pictures)

Overview: Single mom Juana (Diana Torres) can slice and dice anything with great speed and precision. After working at a fruit-vending cart for years, she decides to take a job at a local Japanese restaurant. Intrigued by the food, she learns to make a multitude of sushi on her own. Eventually she attempts to become a sushi chef, but is unable to because she is the 'wrong' race and gender. Against all odds, she embarks on a journey of self-discovery, determined to not let anyone stop her from achieving her dream.

DVD Verdict: First off, I have to fully admit that this film was a completely enjoyable experience. The script was well written, the acting was superb, and the cinematography was great. Even the sound, which sometimes suffers outside of Hollywood, was perfect. My only complaint is that I am not a fan of hand-held camera, but I understand that it is a legitimate technique, and it actually pulled me in during one scene, which is unusual.

One of my favorite parts about this movie is that the "moral" is a little ambiguous and isn't hammered home. Hollywood movies are always so black-and-white with good guys and bad guys, which is nothing like real life. 'East Side Sushi' is much more subtle and realistic about themes like racism, gender bias, and social class. It is very refreshing.

Indeed, I actually ended up discussing this movie for hours afterwards, and recalling some of the great scenes, which is unusual and definitely the sign of great filmmaking. Ergo, I very highly recommend 'East Side Sushi' to you and yours also. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Feature of:

Deleted Scenes
Behind the Sushi - Making of Featurette
Behind the Music - A Look into the Unique score

Check out this link to view and download a fun “Tasty” video that shows the step-by-step way to create the Green Diablo Sushi Roll from 'EAST SIDE SUSHI'!