The latest 'œmind'“twisting, eye'“tickling wonder' from director Satoshi Kon shows why American animation can't hold a candle to its Japanese competition, said Manohla Dargis in The New York Times. Unlike kid'“oriented American animators, Japanese filmmakers deal fearlessly with violence and sex. In Paprika, 'œwhen a woman sprouts a pair of wings, she doesn't only flit about like Tinker Bell; she's also pinned captive to a table, a man's hand slithering under her skin.' Kon's unforgettable images unfold endlessly like gorgeous hallucinations. His film overflows with visual nods to everything from Godzilla to James Bond, said Rob Nelson in The Village Voice. With its supercharged visuals and impossibly complex plot, 'œthe movie comes on like a mix of a vintage surrealist short and a state'“of'“the'“art blockbuster.' Atsuko Chiba, a female scientist, helps invent a device that can record people's dreams. When it's stolen, she must hunt down the bad guys by entering a dream world where she takes the form of a superpowered pixie named Paprika. 'œDon't get it? Join the club.' The film's hardly made more intelligible by being subtitled rather than dubbed, said Stephen Whitty in the Newark, N.J., Star'“Ledger. Then again, 'œclarity holds little interest for Kon,' and shouted phrases like 'œThe anaphylaxis is expanding exponentially!' sound equally meaningless in any language.
Continue reading for free
We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.
Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.