Fantasia 2012: Beware! Your favourite food bites back in ‘Dead Sushi’!
Directed by Noboru Iguchi
Written by Noboru Iguchi and Jun Tsugita
Junk food is tasty food with little to no long term pertinent effects, other than some negative health concerns if one consumes to much. Its purpose is to stuff that hole in one’s stomach in moments of hunger and nothing more. One does not savour junk food. One shoves it down’s one’s throat in appreciation of the fact that it probably tastes good because one was so famished at the time. Sushi cannot, under any circumstances, be considered junk food. Rather, it oft referred to as a form of delicacy, pending on where and how it was prepared. That did not prevent Japanese director Noboru Iguchi to make a junk food style film based on one of the tastiest, healthiest foods on the planet. Dead Sushi, which had its world premier at Fantasia a few days ago, is a glowing example of a lovingly made film, an easy to love film in fact, which goes down smooth for its wonderful taste, even though it means nothing in the grander scheme of things.
Japan prides itself on its sushi, a world renowned element of that country’s culinary history. Young Keiko (Rina Takeda) is a sushi chef pupil under the tutelage of her strict father (Jiji Bû), who wants to mould his daughter in such a way that she loses sense of her femininity and finally make sushi like a man. Right, of course. This does not go according to plan, forcing the father to expel Keiko from the family business and home altogether. It is not long before the timid protagonist finds new employment in a highly respected inn in the countryside. The night a group of representatives of a powerful, influential pharmaceutical company is when things go haywire, for outside lingers what looks to be at first an idle homeless man. This mysterious fellow carries with him a genetically engineered little squid, and, in his rage against his former employers, sends the squid into the inn for it to infect the establishment’s coveted sushi. Pretty soon, the entire place is overtaken by flying, flesh eating sushi! From delicacy to just plain deadly! Only Keiko and Sawada (Shigeu Matsuzaki), a former chef now relegated to concierge, have the courage to stand up to the vengeful hobo and his army of, yes, sharped toothed sushi.