The original ghost in the shell is iconic anime, and a rich philosophical text

This Hollywood remake of the 90s anime classic pays tribute to the original while broadening its appeal. And it looks fantastic…


How vì chưng you improve on one of the greakiểm tra anime films ever made? The groundbreaking 1995 original Ghost in the Shell, directed by Mamoru Oshii & based on a manga series by Masamune Shirow, was a masterpiece. Its influence was far-reaching – most notably on The Matrix. But Ghost in the Shell was a challenging watch. For every shot of a generously breasted naked cyborg plummeting from the top of a building, there was a scene in which characters grappled with knotty philosophical questions. What is the nature of identity when the brain is souped up with cyber-implants and the soul is reduced lớn a series of electrical impulses? (Incidentally, the question of why a cyborg would need a gigantic pair of knockers in the first place was left unanswered.)

The cerebral element & the languid pacing initially scared off the non-Japanese audience. The film’s cult success came later, with the Clip release and slow-building word of mouth. That’s not a route this live-action Hollywood remake can afford to lớn take.

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To this kết thúc, director Rupert Sanders has dialled down the introspection, beefed up the action & tweaked the enigmatic plot with a Wolverine-style origins story that sees augmented cybernetic cop Major Motoko Kusanagi (Scarlett Johansson, a controversial piece of casting that drew accusations of “whitewashing” a Japanese character) delving inlớn her own memory khổng lồ learn the truth about her creation.

The result may be a more conventional film, but it’s also a more accessible one. And, crucially, it’s not so dumbed down that it loses the ghost of the original’s chilly techno-dread. Johansson dives deep inlớn a tricky role, a character who is as much a sentient weapon as she is a human consciousness. The Danish actor Pilou Asbæk is a solid presence as the Major’s partner, Batou, delivering an unexpectedly soulful turn for a muscle-bound lunk with metal eyes.

The main selling point here is the film’s breathtaking visual impact. References include everything from Blade Runner lớn Chris Cunningham’s music Clip for Björk’s All Is Full of Love. But most of all, Sanders pays tribute lớn the original anime. Both take Hong Kong as inspiration, but looming over this technotropolis are giant holographic figures, as imposing as gods, extorting the people below to buy a lifestyle. Peel baông chồng the neon và artifice và there is a maze of cancerous concrete, cyborg chop shops & street dealers peddling implant upgrades. It’s a thrillingly sordid world; I can’t wait khổng lồ revisit.