East Side Sushi (2015)


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East Side Sushi introduces us to Juana, a working-class Latina single mother. Forced to give up her fruit-vending cart in order to find a more secure job, Juana lands a position as a kitchen assistant at a local Japanese restaurant and discovers a whole new world of cuisine and culture, as well as a new friend. While working in the restaurant's kitchen, Juana secretly observes the sushi chefs and eventually teaches herself to make a multitude of sushi. Her creativity sparked, Juana's re-ignited passion for food drives her to want more from her job and her life. 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.

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Critic Reviews for East Side Sushi

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (8)

"East Side Sushi" is a charming little picture.

Nov 12, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Lucero compensates for ... missteps with subtly persuasive visual choices and narrative restraint.

Nov 12, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

East Side Sushi captures the grind and pleasure of the food industry as Juana shifts from numbing routine to a challenging cuisine.

Sep 25, 2015 | Full Review…

Anthony Lucero's delectable debut feature has its share of on-the-nose writing and Cinderella-story contrivances, but for the most part folds its cross-cultural insights into a pleasing underdog narrative.

Sep 21, 2015 | Full Review…
Top Critic

A rather humanist tone infuses "East Side Sushi," offering a sense of hope as characters choose to come together rather than be pulled apart.

Sep 21, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Endearing performances, accomplished low-budget filmmaking and a distinctive urban setting all add up to an appetizing offering.

Sep 21, 2015 | Full Review…

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