I have just discovered that yet another PK Dick story is to be 'adapted' by the Hollywood visual vomit factory. This usually means the title and a few character names are used, together with a few plot devices (see 'Minority Report' et.al.) but essentially the film bears little resemblance to the book. The tale in question is 'A Scanner Darkly', PKD's classic of drugs, feds and paranoia. Richard Linklater has written the screenplay and is directing, apparently. So far, so good. He certainly has appropriate 'alternative' credentials - well, a couple of his films are called 'Slackers' and 'Dazed and Confused' and he's recently done 'School of Rock'.
Then I saw the cast and I'm afraid my bile began to rise;
Dameon Clarke .... Mike
Rory Cochrane .... Freck
Jack Cruz .... Police Officer
Jason Douglas .... New Path Farm Manager
I have no idea who these gentlemen are and have not bothered to look around the net to find out. Therefore I will give them the benefit of my (considerable) doubt.
Robert Downey Jr. .... Barris
He's been in a few things, hasn't he? The film about Charlie Chaplin? And I believe he knows drugs and rehab. Needs to slim down a bit and grow 6 inches to play Barris, though, if he is to match my mental image of the man. Which of course he will do.
Woody Harrelson .... Luckman
No problem with this chap - what I've seen him in, I've liked.
Heather Kafka .... New Path Girl
Marco Perella .... Donald
Again, I'm ignorant. I had no idea a distant relation of Metamorphosis' author was an actor/actress/actoress/ whatever the current term is.
Keanu Reeves .... Fred/Bob Arctor
NO !!! FOR THE LOVE OF PHIL, NO !!! This man is and always will be, Bill from the Bill & Ted films. I must be the only sci-fi fan to find the Matrix films very stylish, very trendy and absolutely silly. They are, in fact, more entertaining with the sound off because then nothing distracts you from the expensive and flashy visuals. The fact that Reeves was in them must be the only reason he was considered for this part. I can see the Hollywood logic now - new film > science fiction > the matrix > male lead > keanu reeves.
Winona Ryder .... Donna
The dark-haired girl. She needs to be hard to play Donna, though, and I don't think she is hard enough.
But his kids like it .