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The Ramen Girl (2008)

2:01 | Trailer
An American woman is stranded in Tokyo after breaking up with her boyfriend. Searching for direction in life, she trains to be a râmen chef under a tyrannical Japanese master.


Becca Topol (screenplay)





Cast overview, first billed only:
Brittany Murphy ... Abby
Toshiyuki Nishida Toshiyuki Nishida ... Maezumi
Soji Arai ... Toshi Iwamoto (as Sohee Park)
Kimiko Yo ... Reiko
Daniel Evans ... Charlie
Renji Ishibashi ... Udagawa
Gabriel Mann ... Ethan
Tammy Blanchard ... Gretchan
Daigo Tanji Daigo Tanji ... Taxi Driver
Thane Camus Thane Camus ... Wilson
Hako Ueno Hako Ueno ... Hanako
Masayuki Maekawa Masayuki Maekawa ... Vendor
Yûya Ogawa Yûya Ogawa ... College Student (as Yuya Ogawa)
Tomoyuki Kuramoto Tomoyuki Kuramoto ... College Student
Yuta Yuta ... Young Man at the Shrine


Abby, four years out of college, an aimless child of privilege, comes to Tokyo to be with her boyfriend, who promptly leaves for Osaka. She wants to stay in Tokyo in hopes he'll come back to her, but she's miserable: she speaks little Japanese and has a dull job as a law-firm gopher. She stumbles into the neighborhood ramen shop operated by the aging master chef Maezumi and his wife Reiko. His soup cheers Abby, so she decides to apprentice herself to him. He's uninterested, she's insistent, so he shouts at her and gives her all the cleaning to do. Weeks go by; she's persistent. Will he ever actually teach her to cook? And if he does, will she bring the requisite spirit to the job? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


In food as in life, sometimes the missing ingredient is love. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


There is a restaurant in El Cajon, California called "The Ramen Girl," and it pays tribute to the film and actress Brittany Murphy with their menu item "Tribute," which is their version of "Abby's Goddess Ramen" featuring their House Broth with Shio, Bamboo Shoots, Bell Peppers, Roasted Tomatoes, Corn, Cilantro and Black Garlic Oil. Update: As of March 2018, they no longer offer the item. See more »


Abby tells Maezumi that she's never finished anything important in her life, including college. However, she is shown working for a Japanese company in the first part of the film, which would not be possible since Japan does not issue work permits to foreigners who have only a high school diploma. See more »


Gretchen: Hey Japan! I was fired tonight! On Christmas Eve!... Heartless japanese! Cold blooded Japan!
See more »


Referenced in Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations: Japan: Hokkaido (2011) See more »


Lights Go Out
Written by Kate Holmes, Sarah Blackwood and Martin Glover
Performed by Client
Courtesy of Loser Friendly Records
See more »

User Reviews

Brittany: Modern Day Monroe
9 June 2012 | by sandy-340See all my reviews

Watching Brittany Murphy's films posthumously makes you realize that although many of her movies weren't that great, SHE was a REAL shining star. She was the Marilyn Monroe of her era - bright-eyed, innocent, full of life and wonder. Her childlike hunger to learn is most evident in The Ramen Girl and this part was made for her. Too bad the supporting actors weren't as good... too bad the script was mediocre. It was a terrific idea and Brittany's acting makes it worth watching. She will charm you and, like other coming of age movies, you'll be inspired to want to change your life somehow or do your best at what you're doing now. Watch Brittany and take in her many-faceted soul in this and her other films and you'll be enchanted.

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Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]


USA | Japan


English | Japanese

Release Date:

23 October 2008 (Russia) See more »

Also Known As:

The Ramen Girl See more »

Filming Locations:

Jacksonville, Florida, USA See more »


Box Office


$32,000,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (European Film Market)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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