About the Film

He's "Made in America." She's "Made in Japan." But their parents think they are "Made for Each Other."

Two families, one from Japan and one from a small town in West Virginia, own businesses next to each other. Mr. Hayashi, a former samurai movie actor, has a hard time introducing Japanese culture through his video business. Greg and Julie Marshall run a Christian bookstore, but are having a hard time in a depressed economy.

Miki, the Hayashi’s shy but sincere daughter, is trying to help her immigrant parents’ business. Ian Marshall, charismatic and outgoing, has been waiting for God to show him his intended spouse.

Although from completely different cultures, the families wrestle with the same life challenges, especially helping their children choose suitable mates.

As cultures collide, comedy ensues. Will old habits intervene?

Or will love find a way through an unexpected source?


Devin McDonald Sayaka Stephens Kazuo Tsubata Bob Charnley Joan Crooks

Devin McDonald
as Ian Marshall

Sayaka Stephens
as Miki Hayashi

Kazuo Tsubata
as Daisuke Hayashi

Bob Charnley
as Greg Marshall

Joan Crooks
as Julie Marshall

Satomi Pirrone Masako Foltz
Isaac Synder

Satomi Pirrone
as Natsuki Hayashi

Masako Foltz
as Betty Jenkins

Isaac Synder
as Kevin Marshall

Miwa Yokoyama
as Teruko Hayahsi

Supporting Cast -
Brandon - Gary Bernard DiNardo
Josh – Daniel Thorp
Lauren – Jin Soon Stephens
Teruko Hayashi – Miwa Yokoyama
Gina – Bethany Butler
Leon – Antwon Temoney
George McGuire, Mayor – Lou Ramos
Helen Morgan, Councilmember– Katherine Ryan
Bartender (Pizza Place) – Andy Collandrea
Vandals -  Hashim Muhammad, Kentoku Aoyama, Ilseuk Masuda
Police Officers – Daniel Thorp, William Martinez
Kids – Richard Austin Haiderer, Shalyathan Berry
Jacinta Eaglefeather – Juanita Salazar
Bob Eaglefeather  – Gregory Davis
Attorney Frank Nelson – Arthur Herstein
Judge – Floyd “Kin” Sayre
Timid Citizen – Shelley Nichols
Mr. Suzuki – John Liu
Minister - Bob Foltz
Store Owner - David Wilt


The Dove Foundation

Here is a fantastic movie which focuses on honor and respect. How many of those do you see these days? This is viewing time well spent.

Daisuke Hayashi is a former film actor who made Samurai movies and moved his family to America from Japan due to the persecution they encountered for their Christian faith. Daisuke's daughter, Miki, arrives in America from Japan to help her family with their struggles in running a video store. Miki's path crosses that of Ian Marshall, who knows something about honor as he is helping his parents by placing their business online.

It soon becomes apparent that the Marshall family was meant to cross paths with the Hayashi family. When Miki is faced with deportation, Ian makes a decision which can change everyone's life. Yet the film features humor too, such as when Daisuke says some Americans believe all Japanese films are either cartoons or Godzilla movies! In another funny scene a Japanese man refers to a computer "Greek" instead of "geek"! The coming together of two cultures presents plenty of opportunities for laughter.

This is a wonderful movie and we highly recommend it and we are pleased to award the film our Dove "Family-Approved" Seal.

Reviewer: Edwin L. Carpenter

The Dove Family Approved Seal is awarded to movies, DVDs, made for TV movies and specials, books and other entertainment products that portray and encourage positive values.

We so enjoyed the full disc of Ai Means Love. The spiritual messages -- the parallels in the two cultures finding ultimate understanding and love-- the obvious joy had by all: the writer, the director, the producers and crew, the actors and the locals who supported. We are seeing the Japanese cast as old friends having enjoyed the earlier productions. Kazuo especially captured his role of stern father and keeper of the traditional culture while whisking it all with sly wit. We became comfortable with everyone in the cast. Such a range from the leads to a gentle black minister to clueless buddies who finally got with it.

The production was superb -- skillful script -- expert change of locations -- finely tuned camera angles and close-ups -- and once again outstanding sound track. All smooth and professional. The Behind the Scenes piece in "Specials" became a story in itself. It is gratifying to be reassured that cities like Martinsburg, WV, are alive and well! Very interesting to see how the locals melded into the film with roles, locations and daily support. The Heart of The Samurai gave yet another interesting insight to Japanese tradition. And the black and white and subtitles work well.

We wish you continued success with travels to festivals and showings. Much of the world seems trapped in conflict and anger. A strong dose of Ai could do wonders -- and probably already has.

- Larry and Rosemarie Presby

“This was a beautiful movie, it showed what love really is through Christian faith, along with the culture and traditions of the Japanese. Plus it was full of funny moments! Would recommend seeing this to anyone!”

-Bryan Churchey

“Such an enjoyable family movie. I laughed, cried—thoroughly loved it—
a great Christian movie for family time together.”

-Sukey Rankin


© LightSmith Productions 2012 |