Being cooped up for endless days in bed means I get to watch some films that I’ve wanted to watch but have never had the time. I just finished watching Jiro Dreams of Sushi. It’s a quiet documentary about Jiro, a sushi chef who runs a tiny, ten-chair sushi bar in a Tokyo subway station. He also happens to have won three Michelin stars for his little restaurant. One can only eat at his bar by reservation, and that at least one month in advance.
The film is a wonderful, luminous and loving look at the life of a man dedicated to excellence and incredible focus. Jiro’s been making sushi for seventy-five years. Even though he’s widely acknowledged as the best sushi chef on the planet, he says he is still climbing. The film deftly portrays his fierce dedication, but also his intense love for the art, as well as his reserved love for his two sons, both sushi chefs as well.
The film, of course, is a spotlight on Jiro and his art of sushi, but it also is a counter-culture celebration of hard work, patience, self-sacrifice and determination. These are things that are growingly increasingly foreign in our times. To see them lived out in such splendid color and result is truly inspiring.
If you like quietly paced films and have any appreciation for the celebration of excellence, I think you’ll be fascinated by Jiro Dreams of Sushi. I rarely recommend films, but I heartily recommend this one.
Jiro says at one point: “In order to make delicious food, you must eat delicious food.” I think that pretty much applies to everything in life, doesn’t it?