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A Scanner Darkly (2006)

R  |   |  Animation, Sci-Fi, Thriller  |  28 July 2006 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 85,631 users   Metascore: 73/100
Reviews: 292 user | 227 critic | 33 from Metacritic.com

An undercover cop in a not-too-distant future becomes involved with a dangerous new drug and begins to lose his own identity as a result.



(novel), (screenplay)
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3 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brown Bear Lodge Host
Sean Allen ...
Additional Fred Scramble Suit Voice (voice)
Cliff Haby ...
Natasha Valdez ...
Mark Turner ...
Additional Hank Scramble Suit Voice (voice)
Medical Deputy #2
Medical Deputy #1
Arctor's Daughter #1
Sarah Menchaca ...
Arctor's Daughter #2


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

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Everything Is Not Going To Be OK See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug and sexual content, language and a brief violent image | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 July 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Una mirada a la oscuridad  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$8,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$391,672 (USA) (7 July 2006)


$5,480,996 (USA) (6 October 2006)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Based on Philip K. Dick's personal drug experiences. See more »


When Luckman first brings in the bike, he lifts the front wheel into the air, holding the bike with both hands on the handle bars. As the scene cuts to a different angle while he is talking, one hand is now on the cross bar with the other still on the handle bars. See more »


[first lines]
Freck: [on the phone] I looked them up. They're aphids. They're in my hair, on my skin, in my lungs. And the pain, Barris, it's unreasonable. They're all over the place. Oh, they've completely gotten Millie too.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The "Phil" mentioned in the "in memoriam" list as having permanent pancreatic damage is Philip K. Dick himself. See more »


A Scanner Darkly
Performed by Graham Reynolds feat. The Golden Arm Trio
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Pure Phillip K. paranoia
17 July 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Saw this film today in a theater with no air conditioning on the hottest day of the year...pretty fitting for a movie about claustrophobic paranoia. I'd been looking forward to seeing this from the first time I saw the trailer. Whatever can be said about this film, there is no denying it's totally unique look. After awhile, you begin to get used to the rotoscoping and then suddenly, there will be something thrown in that will call attention to itself and remind you that you are watching animation. I am a fan of Dick's work, but have not yet read the novel upon which this film is based. Great performances all around and kudos to Linklater for his fantastic vision. The film could be considered a bit talky to the average moviegoer, but is much appreciated by fans of cerebral sci-fi. Fascinating premise is told through interesting blend of suspense and comedy. Not for everyone, but certainly worth a look. Certain to become a cult classic.

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Message Boards

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I've noticed something about the reactions to this movie gnosischris
Please release a version without the animation. anonseven
Scramble Suit Seems Pointless thereflectingvoid
woahhh what the hell happened Deppgurl734
About the FAQ on Donna vs. Connie... J_win7
Animated? gibsonrickenbacker-1
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