In a totalitarian society in a near future, the undercover detective Bob Arctor 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
A theme of bears can be noticed in the film: the meeting at the start is of the Brown Bear Lodge; a California state flag (with a bear on it) is seen in Arctor's house; Arctor's name appears to be derived from "Ursus arctos", the scientific name for the brown bear, and from the star, Arcturus (located in the Bootes constellation, which is also known as the "bear keeper or herder"). See more »
(at around 10 mins) Arctor's residence, on the computer screen, is shown as Anahiem, California, a misspelling of Anaheim. The associated zip code, 98345 is for Keyport, Washington. See more »
[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.
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At the start of the ending credits, the following text appears: This has been a story about people who were punished entirely too much for what they did. I loved them all. Here is a list, to whom I dedicate my love: To Gaylene, deceased To Ray, deceased To Francy, permanent psychosis To Kathy, permanent brain damage To Jim, deceased To Val, massive permanent brain damage To Nancy, permanent psychosis To Joanne, permanent brain damage To Maren, deceased To Nick, deceased To Terry, deceased To Dennis, deceased To Phil, permanent pancreatic damage To Sue, permanent vascular damage To Jerri, permanent psychosis and vascular damage ...and so forth In memoriam. These were comrades whom I had; There are no better. They remain in my mind, and the enemy will never be forgiven. The "enemy" was their mistake in playing. Let them play again, in some other way, and let them be happy. Philip K. Dick See more »
Hollywood has tried so many times to capture the feel of Philip K. Dick terms of his style and writing. Films like Total Recall, Paycheck, Minority Report, all were playing to the lowest common denominator and really lost a lot of the feel that Dick conveys in his writing. Blade Runner came close, but it still missed the essential darkness that Dick brings to each and every one of his works.
Enter "A Scanner Darkly", aside from the Interpolative Rotoscoping that the film maker used to put the graphical images of this movie together and give it an amazing visual feel all its own, the vision and imagery conveyed by the film are as true to Dick's original as any movie has come. I left the theater feeling overwhelmed, touched, and changed, much the same way as when I'd finished the book. This is rare, and it is decidedly a beautiful thing.
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