Perfect Blue (1997)

November 17, 2003 • Film, Reviews

Country: Japan
Director: Satoshi Kon
Writer: Sadayuki Murai
Cast: Junko Iwao, Rica Matsumoto
Running Time: 81 Min

Plot: Mima leaves the idol group CHAM, in order to pursue her dream as an actress. Mima climbs up the rocky road to success by performing as rape victims and posing nude for magazines, but is haunted by her reflections of the past.

A well-made thriller about the world of the Idoru. It’s animated with a nice sense of mood, like a well-polished, animated version of Clint Eastwood’s suspense movie Play Misty for Me.
The Idoru are the young teenage pop stars that are cranked out at an almost weekly rate in modern Japan. Noted more for their good looks than for any singing or dancing talent, they light up for a few months and quickly extinguish. Some go on for years, but once they stop looking like teenagers, their popularity generally takes a serious nosedive.

Perfect Blue follows one of these Idoru. Getting on towards her early twenties, she is trying to leave her group and start another career as an actress. But serious death threats and the discovery of some crazy internet fan clubs make her think someone is trying to kill her. She promptly tumbles into dementia.
The film is interesting, taking a serious look at the sexploitation of these Idol singers. In the wake of non-singers like Britney Spears and the Backstreet Boys, these themes have an even greater import in the world. But it’s not a film that will ever be accused of breaking new ground.

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