O@tM: Ghost in the Shell (2017)

GitSPoster
Couldn’t help myself and had to watch it again. 😦

Ok, yesterday or the day before GitS2017 came out on Blu-Ray and, as you can imagine, The Pirate Bay was flooded immediately with high quality rips. So no more cam versions filmed in Korean movie theaters anymore. And as you might’ve thought pirate queen Orca had to get a copy as well. Good one, 4.4 GB, 1080 high res eyecandy.

ghost-in-the-shell-2017-movie-4k
How a hero enters a room: Through the window, what else?

Because, let’s face it, that’s pretty much the only positive attribute we can give GitS: It looks just stunningly great.

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“Now you see me”

By now you know the whole controversy around the GitS franchise, you know what the hardcore fans are angry about and all the counter arguments by the shills and “entertainment first” people. I’m not gonna repeat and reheat the whole messy debate here. It raged on for far too long anyway.

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The “hero stance” is kinda Scarlett’s trademark.

No, just gonna give you my impressions after the second viewing last night and what hubby and me are thinking in closing. Just watching the movie for what it is. I mean it was expensive and it stars ScarJo! Can’t be bad, now can it?

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Many setpieces and scenes where directly ripped from the anime.

A movie that’s standing on the shoulders of a giant but just neglects everything audiences loved about the original must be a good movie, with some merits on its own, right? Else, why would Hollywood do such stupid shit? So last night I kinda forced hubby to watch this monster work with me and …

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The term “body shop” gets a whole new meaning.
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Hero Stance!

 

… and I saw his jaw dropping and his face becoming longer and longer by the minute until he resembled a particularly drowsy horse. 😦

Because why?

Because GitS2017, in addition to all the other things that are bad about it, committed the greatest movie sin: It fukn bored us! 😮

 

 

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What happens when a half tonne weighing girls jumps off a skyscraper? She lands on the ground without any impact … and walks away.

No, really, if the actually not overly long runtime of 1:47 hours appears like you’re watching The Bible movie in an unabridged version, something is wrong with the fukn movie.

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Her hairstyle was the closest resemblance between ScarJo and Motoko.

It’s not as if there was no action and spectacle in GitS, quite the contrary. The sets and locations and the CGI are all breathtakingly stunning. Not just pretty but believably well-lived in and used, dirty and grungy.

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Why robotics scientist Dr. Dahlin had to wear the most artificial and cheap shell will remain a secret?

And, it’s got to be said again and again: Hong Kong is the perfect stand-in for a futuristic Japanese mega city. Also probably much cheaper and easier to get permissions from the municipality than from Tokyo’s. The GitS 1995 anime already used the uber-grungy Kowloon walled city district of Hong Kong as inspiration for many backgrounds.

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Beat Takeshi was badly underutilized. Maybe because he spoke his very few sentences in Japanese and the poor audiences shan’t be bothered with inconveniences like reading subtitles?

GitS also pays hommage to its great inspiration, Blade Runner, with an overabundance of giant floating 3D holos and colours. Much more than what we’re used to from either, Blade Runner of 1982 and the original GitS anime movie from 1995.

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Pilou Asbæk as Motoko’s sidekick Batou was actually the best character in the movie.

 

For us, as moderate fans of the GitS franchise, it felt completely wrong and we got the notion that director Rupert Sanders didn’t really understand the source material. He wanted to make a loud and colourful action spectacle without all the philosophical underpinning. Nothing wrong with that … if you deliver on the other goods. It’s not as if GitS wouldn’t give him enough options to paint great action sequences.

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Hero Stance!

Unfortunately Sanders is incapable of filming action. I mean it all looks good and ScarJo is right in her element when it’s about giving us the hero stance. But with Sanders its all just style, all pretty windows dressing without the nitty gritty. Another wasted chance for GitS2017 to shine as a stand-alone movie (pun intended).

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Googly eyes make everything better!

On the other side of the spectrum, when it’s about theories, philosophies and politics, director and screenwriters are leaving us completely alone. There is nothing in it. Not even an explanation what Section 9 actually is, what role in Japanese internal politics they play, and what task they have. And not anything else neither.

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How a bad guy exits the room: Through the fish tank.

Also, apart from Major/Motoko’s trip of finding herself, there ain’t any greater case or mystery to solve. Do we watch a SciFi flick like GitS for some teenie-girlish navelgazing? I don’t think so.

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Scarlett can do runny shooty action.

Kuze? The bad boy, what about him? Turns out not to be really bad, and is just another vehicle for Motoko to find the story of her former self. Boo! How weak is that please?

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In the body shop again. Motoko would make a high maintenance gf.

I never read the original manga series. It predates even the 1995 movie and wasn’t even called Ghost in the Shell. From what I hear the Japanese title was something like Armored Riot Police or sumsuch martialistic.

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This geisha ain’t a cyborg but a real robot.

The Motoko of the manga was vastly different to all later anime versions from what I hear. It’s said she and Batou were always joking, hard killing and hard partying. Maybe the movie producers should’ve looked into that original-original source material for some inspiration as well.

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WTF?

I bet it would’ve done this movie good. I mean if they wanted to get rid of all the thoughty parts and concentrate on the action … there was the best inspiration.

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Fukable sex robot has no disturbing brain/soul.

So what GitS2017 actually is, is just another Origin story, as we know them and are bored of already from the Marvel Cinematic Universe and its countless super heros. Wait, don’t tell me SKG and Sanders are planning to make more GitS movies in the future? After the giant losses this installment already created I don’t think they will ever try it again.

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Kuze and Motoko are bonding: Aaaaawkwaaaaard. 😮

The only way for the GitS franchise to survive and leave a mark in Live Action cinema would be to do it on a much smaller scale, with an all-Japanese cast … and fukn interesting stories!

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Body shop also gives you a manicure.

This whole thing would work out much better as a grand-scale TV series. Think Game of Thrones and the likes. Let’s have 45 – 60 minutes episodes, much higher tempo, more in-depth planning and analysis and stake out scenes and better fleshed-out characters.

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Section 9 team member Saito has a screen time of about 0.3 seconds.

 

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Does this look like a Japanese woman? Honestly?

All members of the Section 9 operative team have their specialities and backgrounds. Use them, why don’t you?

 

 

 

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“World Builder” Rupert Sanders, repectively his CGI artists, gave us very pretty stuff to look at.

As much as I adore ScarJo as an almost perfect action heroine actress, she needs a strong script to carry her thru the movie. In the constellation as she was presented to us in GitS2017 it couldn’t work. There were too many inconsistencies in her portrayal of Motoko.

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Almost spooky to watch a girly ripping herself apart. 😮

One of the better action scenes of this movie: The Major kinda rips herself apart while destroying a giant remote controlled or AI tank (think rumplestiltskin, LOL). That just doesn’t look brutally good but was the only time we felt anything for our heroine.

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Can I touch it?

So, conclusion time … again: I didn’t like GitS any better than the first time around. Say what you want about the irritatingly bad last two Star Wars movies, they were at least entertaining.

 

 

Oh, and one last thing: Oy! Hollywood, if you’re gonna make a movie about a generally beloved Japanese heroine, please, please, don’t use a gaijin actress with bad make-up. Also ScarJo’s bottle-like sexy figure is much too plump for a Japanese cyborg.

 

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