6.6/10
11,051
61 user 161 critic

Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (2014)

Not Rated | | Drama | 20 February 2015 (UK)
Trailer
2:05 | Trailer
A jaded Japanese woman discovers a hidden copy of Fargo (1996) on VHS, believing it to be a treasure map indicating the location of a large case of money.

Director:

David Zellner
10 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rinko Kikuchi ... Kumiko
Nobuyuki Katsube Nobuyuki Katsube ... Sakagami
Kanako Higashi Kanako Higashi ... Michi
Ichi Kyokaku Ichi Kyokaku ... Library Security Guard
Ayaka Ohnishi ... Chieko (Young Office Girl)
Mayuko Kawakita Mayuko Kawakita ... Ms. Kanazaki
Asami Tano Asami Tano ... Office Lady
Ako Yoshida Ako Yoshida ... Office Lady
Anna Wakamori Anna Wakamori ... Office Lady
Risa Hotta Risa Hotta ... Office Lady
Hitomi Sawano Hitomi Sawano ... Office Lady
Maki Issô Maki Issô ... Office Lady
Ariei Umefune Ariei Umefune ... Office Lady
Takao Kinoshita Takao Kinoshita ... Dry Cleaning Clerk
Tetsuya Hayakawa Tetsuya Hayakawa ... Dancing Couple
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Storyline

A jaded Japanese woman becomes convinced that a satchel of money buried and lost in a fictional film, Fargo, is in fact, real. With a crudely drawn treasure map and limited preparation, she escapes her structured life in Tokyo and embarks on a foolhardy quest across the tundra of Minnesota in search of her mythical fortune. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Japanese

Release Date:

20 February 2015 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Kumiko See more »

Filming Locations:

Minnesota, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$34,114, 22 March 2015

Gross USA:

$623,383

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$739,623
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In a Q&A at the London Sundance Film Festival 2014, the director (and his brother who was not present) claimed that the ambiguous introduction was heavily influenced by the beginnings of the James Bond films that they so loved as children. See more »

Goofs

In one scene, the police officer and Kumiko watch her Japanese copy of "Fargo." Region 2 DVDs do not work in Region 1 DVD players. See more »

Quotes

Older Woman: Solitude? It's just fancy loneliness.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits are almost entirely bilingual in English and Japanese -- even though the movie has never been released in Japan as of early 2016 (either in theaters, media, or internet streaming). See more »

Connections

References Fargo (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

I'll Read You A Story
Written by Colleen (as Cécile Schott) (SACEM)
Performed by Colleen
Used courtesy of The Leaf Label
By Arrangement with Woodwork Music, Ltd.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Bizarre, haunting, darkly comedic, and powerful.

Kumiko is a droll and often disengaged work. Taking it's central idea from a media misstep on a true story Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter takes a path of solitude and contemplation. It's not often that a film is so rudimentary in it's storytelling while being so proficient in setting it's world and reeling you into it. Kumiko is anchored by a great performance from Rinko Kikuchi. One that often treads the line of stoicism while being peppered with flashes of perfect comedic timing and emotional unrest. A difficult performance to hold down, and Kikuchi does so, at times, masterfully.

In Kumiko we are shown time and time again how mundane and unfulfilled her life has become. Kumiko needs something. Some sense of purpose. An adventure. She finds this in her belief that she can recover the buried money, or treasure, from the film Fargo. A truly preposterous starting off point for a story and one that could only be from a misunderstood quote from a real life event. Yes, the basis for this film is indeed rooted in reality. Albeit a misconstrued footnote from the tragic life of Takako Konishi.

Director David Zellner leads this film with great aplomb. His pacing is painstakingly slow though it is very much so deliberate. He lulls the viewer into a state of near boredom to drive home the mundane life Kumiko is enduring. His pairing with cinematographer Sean Porter could very well result in a masterwork in the near future. The two of them lens this film to perfection. Every shot is a gorgeous wonder to look at. Kumiko is often center frame on full display for all to see. This is important as she is a nobody in her life, yet here on this journey of her's she is the subject of interest. Their positioning of her here is quite brilliant. The snow riddled landscapes of Minnesota and North Dakota are beautifully majestic as the backdrop of Kumiko's treasure hunt.

Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter is a bizarre, haunting, darkly comedic, and powerful journey of a troubled individual looking to up the ante on the flop out of a poor hand having been dealt by life. Gorgeously shot and brilliantly performed by it's lead this sure to be polarizing film is an experience to behold. It's creeping pace will offset some, but ultimately there is more than enough here to make it's duration worth your while. 8/10.


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