I was really bored the other day and I bought a subscription to Netflix. One of the first things that I watched was Jiro Dreams of Sushi. It’s a 2011 documentary about an 85-year-old sushi master who has dedicated his life to perfecting the art of sushi. Jiro pours his heart and soul into his craft, and is considered the best in the world. You must make reservations months in advance for a chance to eat at his ten-seat restaurant, and sushi is the only thing on the menu. He doesn’t do appetizers. He doesn’t do dessert. He does sushi, and he does it better than anyone else.
The film explores Jiro’s work ethic and how he demands nothing but the best from his staff. He won’t settle for anything less. He scours the market for the best fish available. He uses the highest quality rice. He makes his chefs create the same dish over and over again until they make it right. Jiro has two sons, both of whom are also sushi chefs. The younger one opened his own sushi restaurant, replicating the menu and feel of his father’s restaurant, while the older son is being primed to replace Jiro in the original restaurant.
This isn’t a film about making sushi. It’s a film about pursuing your goals and striving to master your craft. It’s about integrity, professionalism, and honor. It makes you think about what you are passionate about and if you have the determination to succeed at it. I repeat, it’s not about sushi. But you will crave it the entire time you’re watching it.
Critically Rated at 13/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young