Japan remain on course to add Olympic gold to last year's World Cup triumph after clinically seeing off Brazil in their quarter-final at the Millennium Stadium.
Brazil dominated the early stages but were rocked when Yuki Ogimi gave Japan a 27th minute lead. The Samba Queens desperately sought an equaliser after the interval but were caught short by a rapid counter-attack which allowed Shinobu Ohno to seal Japan's win and set up a semi-final meeting with France.
It had been difficult to imagine anything other than a convincing Brazil win such was their dominance during the opening 20 minutes.
Miho Fukumoto did well to hold a Francielle free-kick which flew through the wall, but the keeper looked less assured as she palmed away a fierce inswinging corner from Marta.
Defender Renato Costa somehow failed to convert from six yards as Brazil continued to turn the screw, volleying over after a ball into the box had fallen into her path via a ricochet off Fabiana. But Brazil's defensive frailties, never far from the surface in this tournament, were soon brutally exposed.
Japan should have led after 22 minutes but Ogimi completely ignored her unmarked captain Aya Miyama after turning in the box.
But Ogimi did convert in the 27th minute as she coolly slotted low into the net as Brazil were cut apart by a simple pass from Mizuho Sakaguchi. After an action-packed opening stanza, the second half began in sedate fashion.
Marta provided some action as she went close to equalising just before the hour as she curled a free-kick a whisker beyond Fukumoto's left-hand upright, while Cristiane wastefully headed over from close range. But Japan killed the game off with a superb break 18 minutes from time.
Ogimi was the provider as her superb floated pass gave Ohno the time to control and come onto her left foot to fire high into the net.