2017   USA, India, China, Japan Ghost in the Shell
Ghost in the Shell Image Cover
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Director:Rupert Sanders
Studio:Paramount Pictures
Writer:Shirow Masamune, Jamie Moss, William Wheeler, Ehren Kruger
IMDb Rating:6.7 (65,474 votes)
Genre:Action, Crime, Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller
Duration:107 min
Rupert Sanders  ...  (Director)
Shirow Masamune, Jamie Moss, William Wheeler, Ehren Kruger  ...  (Writer)
Scarlett Johansson  ...  Major
Pilou Asbæk  ...  Batou
Takeshi Kitano  ...  Aramaki (as 'Beat' Takeshi Kitano)
Juliette Binoche  ...  Dr. Ouelet
Michael Pitt  ...  Kuze (as Michael Carmen Pitt)
Chin Han  ...  Togusa
Danusia Samal  ...  Ladriya
Lasarus Ratuere  ...  Ishikawa
Yutaka Izumihara  ...  Saito
Tawanda Manyimo  ...  Borma
Peter Ferdinando  ...  Cutter
Anamaria Marinca  ...  Dr. Dahlin
Daniel Henshall  ...  Skinny Man
Mana Hira Davis  ...  Bearded Man (as Mana Davis)
Erroll Anderson  ...  Hanka Security Agent
Lorne Balfe  ...  Composer
Clint Mansell  ...  Composer
Jess Hall  ...  Cinematographer
Billy Rich  ...  Editor
Neil Smith  ...  Editor
Comments: I didn't hate it at all. That's impressive since I am so not into Scarlett Johansson. I enjoyed the body she put on display, and sort of admired her ability to not smile. Something about her scowling made it seem amime-y. Then, maybe the only time she does smile it was cute. It's near the end when she succeeds in pulling the hatch open on the monster thingy and her arms rip in half. Very cute. Oh, she did smile once with Batou's dog. That was meant to humanize her.

I think it's normal procedure for US remakes of Asian films to be explain-y. This is no exception. It made it seem a little dry, flat. But the set designs and such were good enough, some quite awesome. There is a washed out, or overly sepia'd or something to the cinematography but I think it would be less noticeable in a dark theater than on my TV.

It's been a while since I watched the original and its many sequels and such so I may have this wrong, but a couple things nagged at me a little story-wise. I thought the Major was supposed to be more gender ambiguous, even though she sports a smokin hot naked female body most of the time. And I thought she took a deep dive into a bad guy in female form. In this film, her search for her history seemed like a Lifetime Channel, very recent, contemporary, mommy issue.

Michael Pitt has some good moments.

All in all, I think people who don't have remake or whitewashing issues they need to express, will enjoy this. A lot. It looks great most of the time, and it condenses and cleans up the story. The condensing and cleaning will bother those who enjoyed the complexity and mystery of the original but it does work here for what it set out to accomplish. It's a standalone movie but I'll bet dollars to donuts we'll see many more iterations of it in the future.

I thought I had a lot more to say about this but I can't remember it now.

Summary: In the near future, Major Motoko Kusanagi (Scarlett Johansson) is the first of her kind: A human saved from a terrible terrorist attack, who is cyber-enhanced to be a perfect soldier devoted to stopping the world's most dangerous criminals. When terrorism reaches a new level that includes the ability to hack into people's minds and control them, Major Kusanagi is uniquely qualified to stop it. As she prepares to face a new enemy, Major Kusanagi discovers that she has been lied to: her life was not saved, it was stolen. She will stop at nothing to recover her past, find out who did this to her and stop them before they do it to others. Based on the internationally acclaimed Japanese Manga, "The Ghost in the Shell."

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