The juddering, crackling video images tell us it’s a true story from the outset, even if what follows feels like a fairy tale: a woman in red called Kumiko walking along the shoreline in search of a cave. There lies what she seeks – the videotape from which the images are taken. Watching it back at her cramped Tokyo flat, what the film shows thus must have really taken place: a tale of violent deception in the harsh Minnesota winter, a man burying money in the snow, treasure just waiting to be found. For a treasure hunter like Kumiko, what better way of leaving all that awkward conversation, office drudgery and motherly nagging behind? Yet being a modern-day conquistador is not without sacrifice: there’s no place for a rabbit on this trip and North Dakota can be awfully cold. But it can’t be all that hard, can it? It’s a true story after all. Head to Fargo, cling on to the map and let no one lead you off-track… The Zellner brothers make an auspicious return with their sense of the strange very much intact, playfully blending real life and fiction into a cautionary tale on the perils of imagination: how seductive it is to believe what we want to believe.
by David Zellner
with Rinko Kikuchi, Nathan Zellner, David Zellner