Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter


Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter

Critics Consensus

Powerfully acted and lovely to look at, Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter offers a treat for cinephiles with a taste for the pleasantly peculiar.



Reviews Counted: 130

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Audience Score

User Ratings: 8,670


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Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.4/5

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Movie Info

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. With Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter, indie mavericks the Zellner Bros. spin a strangely touching underdog fable, populated by eccentrics and elevated to sonic heights by a Sundance award-winning score from electro-indie outfit The Octopus Project, that will leave audiences rooting for the impossible. (C) Amplify

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Critic Reviews for Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter

All Critics (130) | Top Critics (33)

The entrancing fifth feature of the Zellner brothers, Kumiko the Treasure Hunter, is like found art in the beguiling, haunting manner it combines the seemingly ridiculous and desperate with an ineffable and quiet sadness.

Dec 15, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Basically an interesting failure.

Apr 30, 2015 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…

A great film for people who are tired of associating the color black with sadness and despair: now, both of those things are available in snowy white!

Apr 15, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

File this one under "odd and interesting but ... "

Apr 3, 2015 | Rating: C | Full Review…
Detroit News
Top Critic

If Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter takes its time, it's time worth taking.

Apr 3, 2015 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

In the title role, Kikuchi is impressive, easily handling Kumiko's comic and more somber sides and never allowing us to settle into a single or simple interpretation of the character.

Apr 2, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter

Got to admit, not a movie I was seeking out, despite my love of all things Japanese, but I'm glad I saw it. I related to poor Kumiko more than I care to admit to.

Nicki Marie
Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

A disturbing look at a disturbed woman tries to find the treasure featured in the film Fargo. While there are interesting elements, the tidy ending is a jarring departure from the rest of the film.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

That the details of the true story behind this movie are far more fascinating than what is presented here highlights my lack of passion for this production. Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter concerns an obsessive quest. Generally I enjoy these tales about social outcasts that don't quite fit in with society. These quixotic individuals have such a romantic quality that can be very appealing. Kumiko is outfitted in scarlet sweatshirt with a large hood like a contemporary Red Riding Hood. That visual further pushes the fairy tale notion of this modern fable. Indeed the proceedings have a surreality that infuses her life as if it were a dream. But Kumiko is such an enigma that it's difficult to embrace the character. We don't know this woman. She rarely speaks, only occasionally mustering out a random word in her broken English. The locals along the border of North Dakota and Minnesota just want to help her but she is so painfully shy that it's hard to summon any interest in her mission. Kumiko is a curiosity to be sure but not someone I embraced. Her only friend is a pet rabbit named Bunzo. I think it's telling that her animal side-kick is the emotional heart of the saga. I'm #TeamBunzo all the way. #TeamKumiko not so much. fastfilmreviews.com

Mark Hobin
Mark Hobin

Super Reviewer


Kumiko(Rinko Kikuchi) works in an office in Tokyo where she avoids her fatuous colleagues. Her patronizing boss(Nobuyuki Katsube) has her take care of his dry cleaning and other demeaning tasks. In response, she spits in his coffee. In her spare time, she takes care of her pet rabbit and defends herself by phone to her interfering mother. That leaves plenty of time to watch the movie 'Fargo' over and over. Not for any aesthetic reason mind you but to look for clues for buried treasure. "Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter" is an offbeat and engaging character study, about somebody who is not so much searching for something but running away from multiple somethings. And can you really blame her? While Kumiko's actions might be hard to sympathize with at times, remember how malleable reality can be at others, especially with this movie being inspired by a true story. 'Fargo' itself is a complete fiction that claims to be a true story before it starts. And 'Shogun' which is also referenced is historical fiction.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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