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Sundance photos, review: 'Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter' with Rinko Kikuchi

Published January 23, 2014 10:42 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

"Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter" (U.S. Dramatic)


Filmmaking brothers David and Nathan Zellner conjure up the spirit of another cinematic brother act, the Coens, in "Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter," a comedy as dry and chilly as the Minnesota winter where it's set.

Rinko Kikuchi ("Pacific Rim," "Babel") stars as Kumiko, a meek Tokyo office worker who becomes obsessed with finding the treasure she sees buried in a scene from a certain Minnesota-based movie. So Kumiko takes her boss' corporate credit card and flies to Minneapolis, armed with a well-researched homemade treasure map and meeting helpful Minnesotans along the way — including a clueless deputy played by David Zellner (who directed).

The Zellners' script creates some interestingly offbeat Coen-esque characters (though it must be a wild coincidence that Kumiko holds her pet rabbit the way Llewyn Davis carries a cat), but the execution is so deadpan that it barely registers a pulse. —

Sundance screenings

"Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter" screens again at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival: Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. at the Redstone Cinemas 1, Park City; Thursday at 2:30 p.m. at the Prosepector Square Theatre, Park City; Friday at 6 p.m. at the Tower Theatre, Salt Lake City; and Saturday at 9 a.m. at the Egyptian Theatre, Park City.