I watched A Scanner Darkly the other week for the first time in probably a decade. In many ways, the horrors it depicts — lives destroyed by drugs, corporations complicit in that destruction — are more relevant now than they were when the film adaption of Philip K. Dick’s book was initially released.
That also makes the film somewhat harder to watch because it constantly feels like there’s more it could be doing. It’s a lethargic, trippy movie, and while that plays into the theme, it also puts the film’s characters behind a pall. It’s not really clear what anyone’s doing or why, and the minimal plot is far too empty to feel important.
Mostly, the film made me think that there has to be a better use for rotoscoped animation. It’s a…