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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Movies in SF: Paprika - The Spice is Waking Life

Posted By on Tue, Aug 14, 2007 at 8:55 AM

click to enlarge paprika_thumb.jpg
So when we first read about the dream-terror sequences in anime future-classic Paprika, we went 'woa,' all Neo-style, and regretted missing its first run. The below video is a little taste of that strangeness along with the full SF Weekly writeup on this bizarre Red Vic screening tonight and tomorrow. What are you waiting for? -d2

A Dash of Anime

By John Garmon

Published: August 8, 2007

Though anime director Satoshi Kon is renowned for the detailed realism on display in films like Perfect Blue and Tokyo Godfathers, you wouldn't know it from the opening scenes of Paprika. The film begins with a police detective and a mysterious nymph pursuing a killer through abruptly shifting scenes and different movie genres, eventually arriving at a parade of dinosaurs. It's all a dream, of course, but for the rest of the movie the line between the dream world and reality are much more fluid. The story involves a team of doctors who use experimental technology to view and (in the title character's case) enter their patients' dreams as a means of literal dream-work. A thief purloins one of the devices and begins invading the REM of the doctors (and soon the populace), who hunt for the culprit through a collective, chaotic dreamscape. The film is adapted from Yasutaka Tsutsui's psychoanalytically dense sci-fi novel of the same name, but Satoshi eschewed much of the technical jargon, choosing to visually render the characters' astral adventures. The result is a hallucinatory treat akin to Waking Life reimagined as an espionage film.

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David Downs

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