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Ghost in the Shell 2.0


Plot: The years is 2029, the world is made borderless by the net; augmented humans who live in virtual environments. Watched over by law enforcement agents that are able to download themselves into super-powered, crime busting mecha.

The ultimate secret agent of the future is not human, has no physical body and can travel freely through the information highways of the world. Hacking and manipulating whatever, whomever and whenever required.

Review: Regarded as one of the most popular Anime’s of all time, the First anime film to be released at the same time in Japan, Britain, and the United States. Trying to bring anime to a more mainstream audience outside of Japan. Films like this will be ranked along side Battle Royale and other anime’s such as Akira for their ‘cult’ fan bases. GitS is also well known for being a big inspiration for Wachowski Brother’s Matrix Trilogy and some similarity’s can be seen in this movie.

When I watched it I could see what made the film so popular, the extreme gore examples include; limbs being ripped off and heads being shot off with bits of skull and spine flying everywhere. This stuff is obviously quiet cool to watch although it would be quiet disturbing to a timid audience. My track record for Anime movies isn’t a big one as I’ve only really seen films from the Studio Ghibli collection, those films are all a lot more light hearted and family films type, but seeing this shows there is a far darker side to Anime.

The story is very complicated, well for me it was. Maybe because of its futuristic setting and I’m unfamiliar with half of the terms they are using, the one that got me was the ‘Ghosts’, are they the cyborg body’s they have or are they the memory’s in the brain, I’m sure someone will correct me or I’ll watch it more, good thing that It’s surprisingly short film. Films with ‘cult’ like status’s usually run up to 2 and half to 3 hours, but GitS is only on for one hour and twenty odd minutes.

Ghost in the Shell was re-released in 2009 as Ghost in the Shell 2.0 Oshii states “To this day, most people have only seen it on video. That’s why I really wanted people to have a chance to see it on the big screen, and I really hope they do. In terms of CGI, there are over 90 cuts that have been altered and enhanced. And with extensive use of filter effects and colour correction techniques throughout the rest of the film, it’s fair to say that pretty much the entire movie has been enhanced in some way.”

Now the effects and the sound effects do make the movie updated, it doesn’t look like it fell out of the the 90’s. Although I know a selected group of hardcore fans think this is bloody stupid, don’t fix what’s not broken. I think though, if you see this version of the movie before the original if wouldn’t do  you any harm and it makes a difference from having half of the movie cut out and having an alternative ending replacing the original.

There is one thing that annoys me in this movie and it’s a piece of the sound track, the music is of children or women chanting ‘Ah-Ahh’ and this clinky sound, probably just someone playing the triangle. The music is like someone clawing their names against a chalkboard, bloody irritating! That’s my only rant, really.

Final thoughts, choked full of guns, guts, blood and boobs! A Little bit of something for everyone. Enjoy!

2 Responses to “Ghost in the Shell 2.0”

  • Knetan:

    It is bloody stupid… when they slap on the original version as an extra on the dvd and with no attempt at remastering it for today’s audiences.

  • Knetan:

    I thought the soundtrack was amazing btw, including the piece of central score you described.

    Ghost In The Shell is a difficult film and one you need to sit and read (and read into) most of the time but unlike the sequel INNOCENCE, Oshii conveys the issues of Ghost (soul) and all the philosophical stances surrounding it very well. It’s a hghly rewarding, thoughtful experience.

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The Podcast On Fire Network aims to provide a large, continually expanding overview of Asian cinema. On the flagshow Podcast On Fire, the big guns out of Hong Kong cinema gets a spotlight through discussion and review while the remainder of the network shows gives you insight into Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese cinema and the history of adult oriented Hong Kong cinema!

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