This completes Satoshi Kon’s filmography for me, and OMG did I save the best for last (unwittingly). I liked his other three films, but I loved this one – not only does it avoid some of the excesses that anime often falls into for me (including the end of Kon’s Paprika), but it straddles the line between fantasy and reality in a way that is basically made for me. I don’t know if Travis knew that or not when he recommended this to me, but good on you, mate.
When a famous studio is about to close, a TV journalist goes to interview the studio’s biggest star, now long-retired and rather reclusive. She grants him the interview, and starts telling him the retrospective of her life, starting with how she met an intriguing young revolutionary as a girl – he dropped a key, which she picked up and kept for him. She became an actress in hopes that he would see her movies and find her, and at this point, her retelling of the movies she was in blurs with her real-life search for this young man that would last throughout her career and life. Meanwhile, the TV journalist and cameraman ALSO become part of the story, appearing in the movies, and eventually taking part in them and helping her on her quest to find the mysterious man.