Saturday, April 1, 2017

Ghost in the Shell is classic sci-fi with a modern finish

I can't say enough good things about this movie. 

Ghost in the Shell has the feel of Blade Runner meeting the Matrix with a 2017 veneer. It's way up there in terms of my all-time favorite sci-fi movies and I'm looking forward to rewatching it.

I usually think the critical consensus is pretty spot-on. Very rarely do I find myself thinking they've all missed the mark and I think getting mad at critics for not liking a film is pretty stupid.

But wow, did they miss the mark. I do not understand. Did we watch the same film? 

I have no complaints about Ghost in the Shell except that I'm not currently rewatching it. 

Zero, zilch, nada. 

Well, there are a LOT of studio logos in the beginning. So I guess, one complaint. But that seems petty. 

Scarlett Johansson is fantastic in the role of Major. For a character that is iconically reserved and detached, she cranked the subtlety of every action to 11. I found her captivating, pulling me in completely and wholly engaging my attention every second she was on screen. Besides the occasional sarcastic quip and the look in her eyes, you rarely get to know what she's thinking. Where some actors might leave you bored or frustrated, she was perfect. Everything drew you in more instead of pushing you off. 

The supporting roles were ancillary to her performance and did the job they needed to. Nothing that blew me away, but nothing to take away from the movie either. 

The visuals are stunning. We watched it in IMAX 3D, and although the 3D aspect wasn't anything mind-boggling, the visuals in every scene were a marvel to behold. 

It stands on its own without knowledge of the franchise necessary. It is an adaptation, if that wasn't clear. I'm not going to compare it to the original, but I think it did as good a job as could be hoped for. I'm nothing but pleased. 

A lot of the "what does it mean to be human" philosophizing you'd expect from a movie about a girl with a synthetic body.

Speaking of a girl with a synthetic body that didn't choose to have one. There's an entire consent thread throughout the film that pays off quite nicely. As a feminist, I'm fairly happy with the choices made. I can understand that she's partially nude in much of the film and that might bother people, but it makes sense since #1 she doesn't see herself as human and #2 she has a barbie body (i.e. there's nothing there: a synthetic human doesn't need reproductive parts).

It's not looking like it's going to make a ton of money, but let's hope it picks up internationally and we get a couple more. 

If you like sci-fi, you need to go see this movie. If you want to see more movies like this being made, you need to go see this movie. If you want more movies starring female actors in traditionally male roles, you need to go see this movie. If you like anime and want more anime adaptations, you need to go see this movie. 

Go see this movie.