Ghost In The Shell, based on the Japanese manga by Masamune Shirow, is a visually stunning movie with some great set pieces, action sequences and that’s about it.
Anyone who has seen the anime movie version could tell you this adaptation, written by Ehren Kruger, Jaime Moss and William Wheeler is based off of that film. I wouldn’t say the execution is off but I will say the movie is dull. Considering how well the scenes are shot and the vibrancy of scenery it is difficult to imagine that something this beautiful could be this boring but it is.
Ghost In The Shell is about a future world where mankind and machinery are becoming one and most people are augmented with technology in some way. The main character Major/Motoko played by Scarlett Johansson was in a bad accident and lost her body so she had to have her brain placed in the body of a cyborg. Now as the perfect weapon she hunts down enemies and brings them to justice.
ScarJo, like this movie, is perfectly serviceable but I don’t understand why the character of Major couldn’t be played by a Japanese actress. It’s not like she was so amazing in this role that it couldn’t be anyone else but her. She didn’t do a bad job but she wasn’t memorable either and I would have to same about the movie overall. Ghost In The Shell is a good popcorn flick but the story and characters lack depth; except one character.
Michael Pitt as Kuze is the one character who stands out above all. His characteristics, the way he speaks with the robotic stutter and his jerky bodily movements works so well because it matches his characters personality. Kuze is the “villain” but he is tortured because he knows something is not right with his memory and he wants answers from the people responsible. His speech, bodily movements and actions convey how tortured his soul is and Michael Pitt did a fantastic job portraying that.
My favorite scene besides the one’s involving Michael Pitt was at the end where we get an homage to the Ghost In The Shell anime movie. I won’t tell you what happened but I will admit that I got the “feels” because I loved that scene in the anime.
I give Ghost In The Shell a 5/10 rating.