Perfect Blue has been a hard movie to see in this country for a number of years, which is why it’s so exciting GKIDS has obtained the theatrical rights to be able to screen a newly remastered version of the film in select cinemas, in conjunction with Fathom Events, on September 6 and 10.
If you’re unfamiliar with Perfect Blue or the work of its creator, Satoshi Kon (who went on to make Paprika, Millennium Actress and the acclaimed TV series Paranoia Agent before his untimely death in 2010), think of him as anime’s answer to David Lynch. His movies are dark and troubling, dreamlike and nightmarish in almost equal measure.
For Perfect Blue, his debut film, Kon focused on Mima, a teen pop idol who decides to give up her music career to make a go of acting, shunning her wholesome, bubblegum image to take on roles that have her doing some pretty upsetting things. As Mima begins to lose herself in her new job, she starts to have vivid nightmares of her previous persona chasing her, and of the very real obsessive fan who’s mad she’s no longer making music…and taking it out on anyone who’s tarnished her once happy image.
Perfect Blue is a desperately upsetting film, and like Ingmar Bergman’s Persona or Lynch’s Lost Highway, the loss of identity becomes too much for our protagonist to take, leading to an almost unbroken string of tense and surrealistic moments where the audience is never sure what’s happening. It’s also a beautiful movie where all of the visuals are meticulously crafted to be as real as possible, so that when something unreal happens, you’re caught even more off guard.
Tickets for Perfect Blue‘s Fathom screenings are available now via GKIDS’ website.