February 14, 2015

Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (2014)

Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (2014) - Movie Review
Directed by: David Zellner
Country: USA

Movie Review: “Kumiko the Treasure Hunter” presents as much absurdity as moments of fun, becoming the most interesting film of David Zellner, who co-wrote with his brother Nathan. The story follows a depressed Tokyo woman, Kumiko (Rinko Kikuchi), who after discovering an old videotape of Coen Brothers’ “Fargo” in her frequent treasure hunts, gets obsessed with a particular scene of the film where Steve Buscemi buries a suitcase full of money in a precise spot of the North Dakota’s frozen city of Fargo. Impelled by the film’s ‘based on a true story’ and an eager necessity of adventure, nothing can stop Kumiko from pursuing the forgotten suitcase of Fargo, a treasure she’s convinced to be real. Discontent with her solitary life, as well as unmotivated as office clerk, she just regrets to get rid of her only companion Bunzo, a fluffy brown bunny, before depart to the US without notice, leaving her complaining mother in a verge of a nervous breakdown. Along the route to her destination she will meet a couple of strange men who welcome her at the Minnesota airport; an old woman who offered house, food and a much estimated book of James Clavell’s novel ‘Shogun’; and a courteous policeman who offers his help but ultimately lets her down. In the last stage, the resolute Kumiko is by herself, wrapped in a stole blanket she showed no fear of facing the bitter cold and accomplish her mission. The surprising finale guarantees us that “Kumiko The Treasure Hunter” is fictional, and therefore everything can happen. An exceptional direction, genuine performance by Kikuchi, and the beautiful photography by Sean Porter (“It Felt Like Love”), helped to shove us into this delicately humorous adventure.

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