Monday, July 17, 2006

"A Scanner Darkly"

Yesterday, we saw A Scanner Darkly. I can't say I reccommend it exactly, but if you do see it, I'd love to talk about it with you. I had what feels like a complex reaction to the movie. I didn't enjoy myself in the theater much, but relatively few movies have me leaving the theater pondering the nature of reality and talking about Kafka with theCSO.

I am about as anti-drug as a person can get in my personal views, yet I find Philip K. Dick is more so. Normally, I find any depiction of brain damage extremely upsetting, yet somehow, it wasn't as hard to watch here, perhaps because the movie more depicted personalities coming apart than losing intellience. I find depictions of conditions I to some degree share interesting and watching the paranoia here was a lesson in the dark places my own head goes at times. (But naturally, there was the standard scoience-fictiony twist that somebody really was out to get the paranoid people.)

If you're going to go see it, be aware that Robert and Fred are not aware of one another. That's not a spoiler, that's a peice of information that the movie isn't very clear in telling you but that you need to know to make sense of things.

I am normally quite good at predicting what is going to happen in a movie. And indeed, I saw the two major plot twists in this film coming, but I still left the theater feeling I hadn't really understood what was going on. That left me thinking about how sometimes even this most philisophically-complicated stories share a few basic constructions and literary conventions that make them in some sense easy to map in one's head.

(I don't like to be overly repetitive in my sentence construction. In the first version of this post, almost every sentence had an "A, but B" construction and I had to go back and heavily edit to make the writing flow in a more interesting rhythm. I don't usually have this problem and I credit it to my complicated feelings about this movie.) `


1 comment:

Reel Fanatic said...

Interesting stuff ... I'm looking forward to seeing this ... I saw the first 24 minutes over at, but it looks like I'll have to wait for DVD to watch the rest ... If you liked the style of animation, try out Linklater's "Waking Life," if you haven't already seen it .. it's even trippier, but I really liked it