A high-school girl named Makoto acquires the power to travel back in time, and decides to use it for her own personal benefits. Little does she know that she is affecting the lives of others just as much as she is her own.
Told in three interconnected segments, we follow a young man named Takaki through his life as cruel winters, cold technology, and finally, adult obligations and responsibility converge to test the delicate petals of love.
Seemingly unconnected citizens of Tokyo are targeted for bludgeoning by a boy with a golden baseball bat. As detectives try to link the victims, they discover that following the assaults, the victims' lives have improved in some way.
On a journey to find the cure for a Tatarigami's curse, Ashitaka finds himself in the middle of a war between the forest gods and Tatara, a mining colony. In this quest he also meets San, the Mononoke Hime.
Three scientists at the Foundation for Psychiatric Research fail to secure a device they've invented, the D.C. Mini, which allows people to record and watch their dreams. A thief uses the device to enter people's minds, when awake, and distract them with their own dreams and those of others. Chaos ensues. The trio - Chiba, Tokita, and Shima - assisted by a police inspector and by a sprite named Paprika must try to identify the thief as they ward off the thief's attacks on their own psyches. Dreams, reality, and the movies merge, while characters question the limits of science and the wisdom of Big Brother. Written by
I'm not an expert in anime, nor have I seen a lot of this genre, but I utterly admire the immense creativity of people like Hayao Miyazaki ("Princess Mononoke", "Spirited Away"). Satoshi Kon's "Paprika" is a great example of anime at its finest. The movie is a sea of original ideas and a visual blast. Apparently, the plot is about the theft of a machine that allows scientists to enter and record people's dreams, and how a detective and a young therapist called Paprika join forces to get it back. But there is so much going on and so many smart innuendos (remember: this is Rated R anime, not "Ratatouille" - even though I think the R rating is just too much in this case) that "Paprika" becomes one of the most original adult animations in recent memory - superior to Richard Linklater's "Waking Life" and even "A Scanner Darkly", I dare to say. I won't give away anything because I don't want to spoil a single scene, but I'd say that I see it as a movie about the power of movies over our life/dreams, and about the love people like me have for the Seventh Art. I don't know if that was Kon's original idea and honestly I don't care - it's not every day that you find a movie that amuses and says something to you in such an unpretentious way. Whatever was Kon's original idea, I think that he got what he wanted: a movie that both entertains and makes you think. Simply fascinating. 10/10.
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