Movie Reviews

DVD Review: “Paprika”

(Sony Pictures Classics. 2007. Color. 1 Disc. Widescreen. 90 Minutes. Rated R. Directed by Satoshi Kon.) Featuring the voices of Megumi Hayashibara and Toru Fuyuru. Music by Susumu Hirasawa.

Scientists have created the DC Mini, a device that allows people to enter the dreams of others. When a terrorist steals the Mini, it’s up to Dr. Atsuko Chiba and her alter ego Paprika to set things right. Beautifully animated and extremely surreal, this movie made me wonder who spiked my Kool-Aid. It follows its own loose logic and doesn’t always make the most sense, but as it is based mostly in dream states, literal translations aren’t really necessary. Granted, the screwy and sometimes nonsensical plot will probably drive some viewers away, but the lush visuals and fluid animation (courtesy of animation studio MADHOUSE) are worth the trouble (at least to me, but I’m frequently distracted by shiny objects, so you make the call). Equally fitting is the odd techno-pop soundtrack, whose Parade Theme has a way of sticking in my head. This movie can be viewed with subtitles (for the purist), or with the competent, but not outstanding, English dub. Special features include a director commentary track and featurettes about the artwork, the CG, influences for the dreams and a rather interesting look at how the movie was adapted from the novel of the same name by Kon and the author Yasutaka Tsutsui. An easy bet for anime fans, but not for the faint of heart.

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Jared Counts

Digital Technology Manager

Jared Counts moved to Houston in 1995, survived high school and college, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Houston with a degree in Communications (Media Production) and a minor in Film Studies. After being hired part-time at KUHF Radio in early 2003, he proceeded to bounce between...

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