(No) Ghost in the Cinema

Pff, husbandos are all the same. “No, gurlie, me’s not gonna watch that crap and let them Hollywoodians destroy my mental image of Motoko. If you really wanna watch GitS you’re on your own!” Okay then so fukn be it. So I took Oubaas (the van, not my old hubby) to the local mall and made myself a nice little night at the theatre.

hearos

Girl’s movie equipment, full stomach, ticket, Hearos for to protect myself from loud noises

Had to be at the mall in time before the shops closed to get me some ear pfropfen to protect my sensitive hearing and had like 1.5 hours to kill before the movie started. Used the time by mentally writing a food criticism of the worstest bacon/cheese burger meal I’ve ever had. Ok-ish sandwich, high quality beef patty, sensationally underdone, underseasoned and totally lacking any spices/taste, drowned in the wurst BBQ sauce which was thin and overwhelmingly artificial tomato crap. The fries otoh were very nice. That’s why I prefer honest McD’s crap over wannabe posh Steers flamegrilled shit.

The Hearos were true lifesavers tho. Easy to apply and killing out all the shrill overamplified  noises. On the other hand they killed out a good bit of the dialogues as well. But then there wasn’t much of significence said throughout the movie anyway.

Ok, let’s have a look at the movie: Yes, it was exactly everything as I feared it to be. ScarJo’s intrepretation of her character Major Kusanagi Motoko was like totally wrong. She stomped thru the sets like a plump machine. Yes, we know her body’s supposed to weigh roughly 500 kg but at least in the anime she’s agile like a ballerina. Quite contary to her face. Motoko seems emotionless and gives us a lot of empty stares in the anime while ScarJo’s face acts a lot. Ok, it’s her job, right? I’ll let that slip.

But see the problem with this? On one hand she’s overly presenting her machine-like self, on the other she acts like a real female. It has to be said, ScarJo didn’t get a grip on  the major. It’s not her fault alone since the hack director obviously wanted her to act like that. And now we remember Rupert Sanders was exactly the same guy who already burned a lot of resources and great casts in his Snow White and the Huntsman flicks. And he, together with the producers and studio and a super weak screenplay, really fuked it up this time again. Such a basic misunderstanding of the source material is, I can’t describe it any differently, almost willful sabotage of Japan’s most famous and beloved manga/anime.

It starts with the GitS world: Fabled world builder Sanders again made wonderpretty sets, full of life, quirkyness and colours … and that’s wrong. In the 1995 animated movie, from which he borrowed many scenes, New Port City was rather dreary, bleak, grey and a little bit grungy. Not a hitec utopia but Asian dystopia at its worst. The world is just recovering from WW4 , which left Japan as one of the very few intact, undivided countries, much to the envy of all the broken western nations, particularly the ex-USA. But nothing about that, no politics in GitS live action movie 2017. We don’t get why Section 9 even exists. It’s like a futuresque Japanese homeland security, ffs, they are supposed to fight international terrorism. There, right there is your core material, there are many  fascinating stories. No misguided navel gazing required.

Instead what we get here is a brand new, boring and superfluous search for Motoko’s true identity. Groan. Jeeze, another lame-ass “there’s something wrong behind the shiny facade” wannabe socio-critical sci-fi flick. Add to that Sander’s incapability to direct action scenes but replace them with showy buildups and brave hero stances. That’s all very disappointing.

Section 9 was also a big disappointment. We already knew from the 1995 movie and the SAC series that most of the team members are pure function characters, placeholding dummies, so apart from chief Aramaki, the only unenhanced team member Togusa, a newly invented femal operative and of course Motoko’s sidekick Batou, all the others are just stuntmen and extras doing the runny-shooty-shouty thing. While in the anime they sit around too long and plan their next moves, in GitS 2017 this part of Section 9’s work is completely left out. We don’t get a grasp on this agency and what they are standing for. They seem to act in a vacuum.

What can I say about GitS 2017 to save it from the heap of immediately forgetable movies? Not much, to be honest. It would’ve been decently fine if Hollywood hadn’t made too many compromises and unlogical backsteps and dancing around the big white elephant in the room. And if the source material wouldn’t have such a huge and dedicated fanbase. I the end GitS2017 turned out as a very impressively pretty movie that missed the mark by a country mile. A overbudgeted B-movie, with no suspence, unconvincing action sequences and bereft of all content. A script that circled around itself, an introspective into nothingness.

There was no Ghost in the Shell!

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