2004 Year in Review
© Geneon Entertainment
Brett Rogers | Paranoia Agent: Satoshi Kon scares me. I don't know whether it's his mastery of timing or his knack for blurring the lines of memory and hallucination, but something allows Kon to shape animated thrillers like no one else can. Paranoia Agent is a showcase for Kon's chilling ability to animate manifestations of human psychology and another example of Studio Madhouse's continuing excellence as a cutting edge production house.

Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends: Craig McCracken turns out a nice addition to his director's resume with this crisp, richly coloured toon. Foster's premise provides a big canvas for McCracken to work with. After his mother determines he's too old for his imaginary friend Bloo, eight-year-old Mac puts his buddy up at a safe house—a foster home for abandoned imaginary friends—where myriad creatively designed characters await adoption. Great scripts and skilled voice acting add to this 2004 standout.

Dead Leaves: Frenzied and revolting, Dead Leaves has all the head spinning activity of FLCL, delivered in a tenth of the time. A cyclone of violence with smatterings of plot, Hiroyuki Imaishi delivers a train wreck of vivid animation that you can't look away from.
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