Posted by: GregMo Roberts Source:Killer Reviews
If the poster for Sushi Girl wasn’t enough to get me relatively excited, the cast sure does. Sure, you may consider Tony Todd, Mark Hamill, Michael Biehn and Danny Trejo to be B-List actors, but damned if they aren’t consistently the best thing in A-List movies. So putting them together in a violent crime thriller is my idea of sushi-meshi.
As the film opens, we are introduced to Fish (Noah Hathaway) who has spent six years in prison due to a robbery that went horribly wrong. But Fish is no stooley. He kept his mouth shut did his time like a man. Now, freed from his imprisonment, Fish is invited to a Sushi restaurant (hmmmm), where those involved with the robbery have reunited including Crow (Hamill in a wonderfully evil role), Francis (James Duval) and Duke (Tony Todd). The five men sit around a table with a naked body of a beautiful woman covered in a lavish meal of various Sushi and it becomes clear that after six years there are still scores to settle and the location as to the heist diamonds remains a dangerous lurking question.
Written and directed by Kern Saxton, Sushi Girl was a moderately interesting story propelled by the wonderful performances of the recognizable cast. Tony Todd plays a mean-ass ringleader calling the shots around the table, but it is Mark Hamill’s performance as Crow that stands out as the real screen-stealer. Mark Hamill embodies his Joker persona he uses for the Batman animated cartoon and he is devilishly good in his best performance ever on screen (sorry Luke).
In supporting cameos shown through flashbacks, Michael Biehn (Aliens), Jeff Fahey (The Lawnmower Man) and Danny Trejo (Machete) have throw away roles with Trejo getting the biggest rousing applause from our accepting audience. But the movie is firmly planted in the sushi restaurant and it is here where an interrogation of Fish occurs in increasingly violent fashion.
Upon receiving our invitation to the screening, we had already concluded that the strong genre based cast would be enough to help us enjoy our 98-minute commitment. But we didn’t expect to enjoy the crime thriller as much as we did and we were pleasantly riveted to the screen watching the various performances unfold. The story and the eventual twist at its conclusion were hardly ‘Sixth Sense-ish’, but we credit Kern Saxton for at least keeping it interesting if not a bit predictable.
There have been some comparisons to Sushi Girl and Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs. And it is understandable. Both revolve around a small group of men and a heist that has gone awry. Both movies contain violent offenders that are looking to piece things together to determine who might have been behind some of the more unsatisfactory events. And both have a Mexican-style standoff towards the end where everyone seems to have a gun (or two) cocked and pointed in another robber’s direction. Sushi Girl doesn’t deliver the punch that Tarantino hit our guts with back in 1992, but this stylish and violent gathering of evil people had us entertained beyond expectations and we lapped it up like a desert dog after a long run.