Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter

Yesterday I signed up for a one month free trial on Mubi. I was a member back in 2013 for a few months, but it has changed since then. Now, there are only 30 films to choose from, and each day one is added, while another is taken off. So, I chose this 2014 film because it was about to expire.

It is the story of a lonely, and quite troubled office worker in Tokyo who finds a VHS copy of “Fargo” in a cave at the seaside. She watches it and becomes convinced it is a documentary, and that she can find the suitcase full of money that Steve Buscemi’s character had hidden in the snow. So, off she goes to Minnesota to find the treasure.

The story is actually based on a true story of a woman named Takako Konishi who died in 2001 in Minnesota. She was mistakenly thought to be searching for the Fargo suitcase, but actually committed suicide for other reasons.

What makes this a great film to watch is the acting by Rinko Kikuchi (Pacific Rim), the fantastic photography, and the excellent music by a band called The Octopus Project. The music was at times very eerie, and sometimes bordered on horror. When it played you were expecting some chainsaw-wielding maniac to jump out and start butchering… never happened though.

The films director and writer also played a policeman who tried to help the girl, he was great.

This film would probably put a lot of people to sleep as it moves slowly and there is no action, or psycho maniacs. But, the aforementioned acting, photography, and music make this a very worthy watch. I found it all quite riveting.

“La Haine” is the next film to expire on Mubi, so I will try to watch that tonight.

Date watched: February 5th
Score: 9.5/10
Film count 2017: 30

One of the best shots in the film is the one they used in the poster… quite stunning on film.


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