Anime Review: Ghost in the Shell

directed by: Mamoru Oshii 

4 Stars

It is 2029, and advances in medicine have allowed people to enhance their bodies and brains to the point where one can be more machine than man. A criminal known as the "Puppet Master" has been hacking various people's "Ghosts," the remnants of a person's biological brain after augmentation, to commit crimes such as murder or theft. Motoko Kusanagi, the major of Public Security Section 9, is tasked with finding and arresting the Puppet Master. But the Puppet Master himself hides a secret that, if discovered, changes humanity's relationship with machines.

This is a good, if short, film. It's not so concerned with its story as much as it is with presenting a beautiful visual experience. Halfway through the film, it gets interrupted with a montage of the city, just to set the tone and show off the animation. What little story the movie has is very philosophical and full of allegory, and to be honest, I couldn't get my head around it. It's full of talking, and while it's good, it's fast, and having to read it through subtitles makes it challenging. However, the film wasn't known for its story as much as its action and animation. I wasn't into this movie that much, but since it had a lasting impact on Science Fiction and animation in general, I feel my reaction is that I've watched the movies this film has inspired already, and that dulled my excitement for this one since its scenes that I thought would be cliché were actually innovative, and there were a lot of scenes that I thought were like that. I liked the film, but I believe it's not as perfect as others think. 

Reviewed by Gavin 

View in Library Catalogue: DVD