A Scanner Darkly

At first, I wasn’t sure I liked the gimmick of this movie, the veneer of cell shaded animation over the top of film. But, I got used to it, and overall it fits the tone and fuzzed perceptions of the main character really well. As stylistic choices go, it was risky but it paid off. I don’t think I would have liked this story nearly as much if it had been presented in live action. It would have been a little too gritty I think, and that is an aspect of heavily drug related movies that usually irks me.

Post production must have been hell though. Obviously this started off as a cell shading filter over film, but there was a lot of handwork in the crafting of the final product, and it shows.

What a plot though. I surmised that this had to have been based off a book – movies this odd are almost always based on a book. Certain things, like the way the camouflage suits work, just don’t get written for screen. Pragmatism gets in the way. Fiction authors are not so restrained.




  • Everyone wants the (substance) D.
  • Animated Keanu
  • The one monologue (probably from the book) which had to go into the movie unaltered
  • Grim dystopic twist ending
  • The dedication at the end.¬†Ouch, my feels.


  • That is a very complicated way of making someone unidentifiable
  • Cell shaded breasts
  • This might be a third type of stoner movie, somewhere between the two extremes
  • Sex scene in an animated movie


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