As Lewis Bennett’s short film The Sandwich Nazi opens, we meet subject Salam Kahil as he regales the customers at his deli with a tale of a sexual encounter with a woman who decided to shove a candle up his a*s while giving him a blow job. When the story turns to the candle being pulled out a couple inches shorter than it went in, you’re shocked. When the camera pans to reveal the pieces of broken candle in a plastic bag hung on the wall, your mind is blown. He serves food in the vicinity of a bagged,broken a*s-candle, and people are cool with that!?!
As it turns out, it’s just another day with a man whose lewd tales while working are as much a draw as the supposedly incredible sandwiches he creates. And when he’s not talking about sex, or getting blow jobs in his special blow job spot in the back of the shop (which still has cum stains on the floor), he’s actually doing something for Vancouver’s homeless community, by making and handing out free sandwiches under a belief that you put up or shut up, and help starts at home in your own community.
On the surface, sure, Kahil seems nutty, but his eccentricities extend to truly humanitarian actions. He also believes in manners and being accepting of others, regardless of personal difference; thoughts as much a part of his shop’s “sandwich nazi” rules (always say “please,” for example, and don’t answer your cell phone in the shop, lest you not get your sandwich) as his own personal code of life.
And thus we get a humorous, often shocking, short film about a very entertaining, and complex, individual. I still don’t know that I’d be comfortable getting food from a place with a broken a*s-candle on the wall and cum stains on the floor, at least not in theory but, at the same time, if folks say those sandwiches are incredible, I’m game for trying it at least once.