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||IMDB Rating: 7.1/10 from R votes
||Release: 28 July 2006 (USA) /
||Genre: Animation, Drama, Mystery
||Director: Philip K. Dick,
||Stars: Angela Rawna, Chamblee Ferguson, Cliff Haby, Eliza Stevens, Keanu Reeves, Mark Turner, Mitch Baker, Natasha Valdez, Robert Downey Jr., Rory Cochrane, Sarah Menchaca, Sean Allen, Steven Chester Prince, Winona Ryder, Woody Harrelson
||Synopsis: In a totalitarian society in a near future, the undercover detective Bob Archor is working with a small time group of drug users trying to reach the big distributors of a brain-damaging drug called Substance D. His assignment is promoted by the recovery center New Path Corporation, and when Bob begins to lose his own identity and have schizophrenic behavior, he is submitted to tests to check his mental conditions. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
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Watch A Scanner Darkly - Alternative Versions.
When someone on a trip starts to wig out, you take them someplace quiet
and talk soothingly and assure them that everything's going to be OK.
But as the tagline of this film makes clear, for these characters
everything is most definitely NOT going to be OK.
For those who haven't read the book, it's important to know what you're
getting into. PK Dick wrote this novel as a way of telling the story of
how he and his friends in the early '70s damaged and destroyed
themselves with drugs. He tells this story within the framework of a
surreal science fiction thriller, but many of the scenes are straight
from his own experiences with the unpleasant consequences of people
using drugs and disintegrating mentally.
This film does an amazing job of capturing the feel and tone of the
book as well as the paranoia, perceptual distortions, and chaos of
hallucinogenic overindulgence. Add to that a story that only gradually
emerges from the madness, but by the end brings in a lot of heavy ideas
such as the existence of free will, whether ends justify means, etc.
There is a sense of consequence to what happens in the film, a sense of
despair at what has been lost. So this story of drug-addled losers
becomes the story of the human struggle for identity and meaning.
I have a couple of minor quibbles regarding scenes from the book that
only partially made the cut (no explanation for the significance of "If
I'd known it was harmless I would have killed it myself, no little kid
to explain how 6 and 3 gears means 18 speeds). Still, most adaptations
of PK Dick stories take a few basic ideas and try to shape them into
more conventional films that fit into established genres. Even when it
works, such as with Blade Runner or Total Recall, it's not really PK
Dick. Not so this film. This is PK in all his dark and perverse and
deeply thoughtful glory.
Tags for A Scanner Darkly Full Movie
, Chamblee Ferguson
, Cliff Haby
, Eliza Stevens
, Keanu Reeves
, Mark Turner
, Mitch Baker
, Natasha Valdez
, Robert Downey Jr.
, Rory Cochrane
, Sarah Menchaca
, Sean Allen
, Steven Chester Prince
, Winona Ryder
, Woody Harrelson
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