Movie Review Sweet Bean
October 20, 2018 5:39pm CST
Spoiler Alerts 2015 The second film in the film festival double bill today was this wonderful Japanese movie, which though it has its sad moments, ultimately goes for joyous. It centres on Sentoro (Masatoshi Nagase) a young, unhappy cook running a cafe specializing in Dorayaki (a pancake sandwich filled with sweet bean paste). Sentoro is advertising for an assistant but the only one taking his vacancy offer seriously is a 76 year old woman with crippled fingers. Sentoro tries to dismiss her as kindly as possible until she brings him her home made sweet bean curd to try. Realizing it is delicious, he hires her and she teaches him the complex, near mystical skills needed to make the best Dorayaki in town. Soon, the pair can barely keep up with demand. Unfortunately, a school-girl discovers that the old lady, Tokue (Kirin Kiri) is living in an old folk's leper colony. Though the girl feels sorry for Tokue, in mentioning the news to her mother she causes everyone to boycott the shop and Sentoro, pressured by the loan shark he works for to pay off his debts, has to fire the old lady. Months later, Tekoro and the school girl visit the leper colony and Tokue advises him to experiment with his own new recipes for Sweet Bean Dorayaki, just as his loan shark boss decides to make him accept her son as his new partner. After Tokue dies Tekoro sets up his own mobile Dorayaki stall in the park and starts to get sales again as the credits roll. Sad but ultimately uplifting, with its equal mix of young - old, sweet-sour, health and sickness giving the film a Yin-Yang balance. - One warning, eat before viewing or, like me, you'll be ravenous after seeing so much lovely food on screen. Trailer for the movie - Arthur Chappell
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