7.4/10
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A Taxing Woman (1987)

Marusa no onna (original title)
If tax evasion is an art, wheeler-dealer Hideki Gondo is Rembrandt. And so, a determined taxing woman gets the tough assignment of trying to catch him.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nobuko Miyamoto ...
...
Hideki Gondô
Masahiko Tsugawa ...
Hanamura
Yasuo Daichi ...
Ijûin
Kinzô Sakura ...
Kaneko
Hajime Asô ...
Himeda
Kiriko Shimizu ...
Kazue Kenmochi
Kazuyo Matsui ...
Kumi Torikai
Hideo Murota ...
Jûkichi Ishii
Machiko Watanabe ...
Kangofu
Shôtarô Takeuchi ...
Rihei Hakamada
Mitsuhiko Kiyohisa ...
Gondô no Untenshu
Akira Shioji ...
Fudôsan'ya
Kôichi Ueda ...
Ninagawa no Fukushin
Yûsuke Nagumo ...
Ninagawa no Kobun

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Storyline

Ryoko Itakura is a government tax agent who has just landed a big promotion. Her first assignment is to catch wheeler-dealer Hideki Gondo. She has a tough job, since in Japan tax evasion is an art and Gondo is, in effect, Rembrandt. Her job is complicated by a growing sympathy for the rogue and by political pressure to lay off. Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He has a Yen for her, but he won't tell her where it's hidden... [USA Theatrical]

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

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Release Date:

June 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Taxing Woman  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Hideki Gondo: To save money, you don't spend it. It's as simple as that. You give maybe $100 at a funeral, $200 at a wedding. That's not good. A million is nothing if you spend it. But even $100 is yours if you save it. Say you're trying to fill a glass with dripping water. When it's half-full, you're thirsty, so you drink. But that's stupid. Wait until it's full. But still don't drink. Wait 'til it brims over and lick it. That way you save the water and drink.
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Connections

Followed by Marusa no onna 2 (1988) See more »

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User Reviews

 
imagine 'The French Connection', played for laughs
6 January 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Japanese satirist Juzo Itami tackles yet another popular obsession in this often bitter comedy sure to strike a chord with any long-suffering taxpayer. The film lacks the playful free-form structure of his earlier 'Tampopo', but compensates with more of the same inflated, deadpan humor, diluted here by a cruel (but not incompatible) streak of anger no doubt reflecting the director's own relationship with the Japanese IRS. Itami's heroine is a plucky, incorruptible Internal Revenue agent (played by his own off-screen wife) involved in a high-tech, fast-paced game of cat-and-mouse with a ruthless, lecherous businessman trying to protect his illicit income by any means possible. Her single-minded pursuit of the Almighty Yen in the service of her government is no less compulsive than the creative tax-dodges of her money-hungry target, and the exaggerated methods of detection and evasion give the film an irresistible comic energy. The tempo doesn't really take off until the second hour, when the entire team of tax agents joins the chase, and their obsessive devotion to duty carries the film beyond the level of absurdity, transforming a colorless world of glorified accountants into an exciting, romantic adventure and showing just how shark-like the lure of money can be, on both sides of the law.


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