Some people might know idiosyncratic animator/director Katsuhito Ishii from his first film, the ‘Tarantino-esque’ romantic-action-crime-comedy
Sharkskin Man and Peach Hip Girl starring cult favorite Tadanobu Asano (Ichi the Killer, Party 7, Takeshi Kitano's Zatoichi). In 2002 he introduced
select festival audiences to Captain Banana, the Peeping Tom superhero, in the bizarre (and hugely underrated) Party 7. In a serendipitous turn of events,
Quentin Tarantino was at the US premiere of Sharkskin Man, loved the film and took Ishii-san drinking until dawn. A few years later, he hired him to
create what is undoubtedly the Ishii’s most famous work - the striking O-Ren Ishii animated sequence in Kill Bill Vol. 1. The two maverick directors
crossed paths again in Cannes when Tarantino chaired the 2004 Jury and The Taste of Tea was selected to open the prestigious ‘Director’s Fortnight’
Nobuo Haruno runs a hypnosis practice in Tokyo, his wife Yoshiko works at home on an animation project, teenaged Hajime has recently fallen for his
classmate Aoi, and six year-old Sachiko is being observed by a giant double of herself and wild-eyed grandpa Akira, carries a tuning fork to hone his
vocal pitch. When Yoshiko's brother, Ayano (Tadanobu Asano) visits from the big city it gets really strange.
This is a wonderful (and surprisingly gentle) surrealistic work that will surprise you, make you laugh, make you wonder, and reaffirm your faith in
magical realism. The Taste of Tea won the Audience Award for Best Feature Film at the 2005 San Francisco Independent Film Festival.
The Egyptian Theater, Friday, September 30th at 7:00pm
Boise Centre on the Grove, Sunday, October 2nd at 7:00pm