Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter: First Look

Posted by The Daily Zombies Saturday, December 20, 2014

Just how influential Fargo truly is? This year alone, we have a critically acclaimed FX TV series of the same name and now we have Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter, an astoundingly well-received indie film based on an urban legend surrounding the 1996 dark crime thriller from the impeccable minds of the Coen Brothers. Here's our First Look at David Zellner's film courtesy of the release of its debut trailer. 


When Oscar Wilde suggested that "Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life imitates Life ", he most certainly did not count on Fargo, the 1996 crime thriller from the unspeakable dark minds of the Coen Brothers, Joel and Ethan. This year, we were initially perturbed and then enticed, followed by eventual full submission to the remarkable pseudo-adaptation of the classic film into a TV series courtesy of Noah Hawley on FX. And here we are, with Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter hunting down universal acclaims in its indie film festival crusades. 

Based on an intriguing urban legend surrounding the perceived demise of a Japanese woman traveling across Bismarck, Fargo, and eventually, Detroit Lakes, Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter decidedly went the unorthodox way spinning more than a few ways from its original source material.


The story of Takako Konishi was undoubtedly the stuff urban legends are made of. The story behind the Japanese office worker who was found dead in November 2001 in Detroit Lakes was initially a sensational news in its own right with the story inflated by media that Konishi came to America to search for the missing stash of money hidden by Steve Buscemi's character, Carl Showalter, in the film. Accordingly, Konishi was under the impression that the film was based on a true story, a point that the Coen Brothers pointed out at the start of film despite the fact that plot is completely fictional. This is exactly what was indicated:



THIS IS A TRUE STORY. The events depicted in this film took place in Minnesota in 1987. At the request of the survivors, the names have been changed. Out of respect for the dead, the rest has been told exactly as it occurred.

Although it has been confirmed by American film-maker Paul Berczeller in his 2003 documentary film "This Is a True Story" that entire ordeal was a misunderstanding between Konishi and one of the Bismarch police officer who somehow fed the media to the urban legend that everyone was talking about back then. Head over to the Wikipedia entry for Konishi to understand more on the mundane but realistic facts of the sad demise of the Japanese office worker when she chose her location of demise due to the fact that she had previously visited the place with her lover, a married American businessman. 

In order to not suck any air from the subject on hand, we have on another hand the Zellner Brothers, of which both David and Nathan wrote while David also directs the film. And with Academy Award nominee, Rinko Kikuci, taking on the role of the eponymous character, Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter chose to depict the film as directed by the misled media with an incredibly obsessed protagonist dead set on her hunt for the stashed loot. 

Based on the trailer we have just witnessed, this is indeed one hell of a film to look out for with its stunning visuals. Check out the trailer right below.


Official images from the film.





Here’s the official synopsis for the film:


In this darkly comedic odyssey, Academy Award nominee Rinko Kikuchi (Babel, Pacific Rim) stars as Kumiko, a frustrated Office Lady whose imagination transcends the confines of her mundane life. Kumiko becomes obsessed with a mysterious, battered VHS tape of a popular film she’s mistaken for a documentary, fixating on a scene where a suitcase of stolen cash is buried in the desolate, frozen landscape of North Dakota. Believing this treasure to be real, she leaves behind Tokyo and her beloved rabbit Bunzo to recover it – and finds herself on a dangerous adventure unlike anything she’s seen in the movies.

Starring Rinko Kikuchi, Nobuyuki Katsube, Shirley Venard, David Zellner, and Nathan Zellner, Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter is up for a limited release at select theatres on March 13th, 2015.



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