I saw the trailer to this movie since more than 2 weeks ago and it truly intrigued me as an interesting futuristic kind of science fiction action movie. Originally my wife and I planned to see this on its premiere date on Wednesday. But due to my work related matter, we were only able to finally see it yesterday. We decided to see this one in one of the nearest cinema from my office at 7PM and as usual still managed to have our light dinner first. Well let us get on to the movie.
Brief Story Line
The film was set in the future where everything in the world seemed to be using technology that could enhance the body with whatever needs required, such as enhancing liver (just to be able to drink lots of beers), or implanting other body parts. There were also robots used for various purposes including servings in the form of geisha. In this period of time, Hanka Robotics was one of the leader in such technology.
Major (Scarlett Johansson - Lost in Translation, Lucy and as Black Widow in Marvel cinematic universe) was a cybernetic enhanced soldier who was also member of the elite task force called Section 9. This task force was specialized in catching terrorists involved in the cyber hacking. Other members of Section 9 also included Major's very trusted friend Batou (Pilou Asbæk - Ben-Hur and Game of Thrones TV series), Togusa (Chin Han - Captain America:The Winter Soldier, Independence Day: Resurgence etc), Ishikawa (Lasarus Ratuere) and Ladriya (Danusia Samal). Their leader was Chief Aramaki (Takeshi Kitano) who was always supportive of his team.
Major who was actually part of an experiment done by Dr. Ouélet (Juliette Binoche - The English Patient, Chocolat etc) was having feeling of glitches in her brain. She confided in Dr. Ouelet in this and let her correct these glitches. Dr. Ouélet worked for her boss Cutter (Peter Ferdinando) who was always critical of Major's development as she was the first of her kind and he wanted Major to be a success for his company.
When a dangerous hacker called Kuze (Michael Pitt - Criminal etc) started to endanger the lives of Hanka Robotics executives, Section 9 had to race against time to avoid further killing by Kuze. Due to her unique condition, Major also was prone to hacking by Kuze which made it a bit harder for her to capture Kuze.
So could Major and Section 9 able to capture Kuze? What was the real reason for the glitches experienced by Major? Find them all in this science fiction action movie.
End of Brief Story Line
Hmmm, it is a bit challenging to describe this movie. I saw this without the knowledge of what Ghost in the Shell was all about. I only knew that it was adapted from a popular manga series in Japan and the premise was about this so-called "enhanced" technology with the vision of what the future would look like. I could enjoy the special effects of the movie (especially the visualization of the city which seemed to be based on Hong Kong), or the totally cool special effects of the cyborgs and of course whatever effects involving Major. Those were top grades effects to my opinion.
Now when we came to the story itself, I felt it was a bit deep and heavier than most action movies. The manga of which the movie was based on, was created by Masamune Shirow back in 1989 and had spawned into various platforms including TV series, video games and animated movies. This movie was the first live-action version of this popular manga. Due to the very specific story and heavily visualized on the manga, it resulted to the bigger challenge to purely enjoy the movie.
One thing that I also felt was the dark and gloomy tone of the movie. There were very minor light or fun part in the movie and there seemed to be little emotion could be felt. It did not give that bit of spark or excitement for the big finale. It's too bad that all I could feel was a bit of flat emotion after seeing the whole movie. I was not able to feel tense, or intrigued with the "mystery" of the movie as I think it could be guessed already.
However, apart from those, I did enjoy the action sequences and the performance of Scarlett Johansson portraying Major as she was quite believable, especially if you see her movements or her expressionless look. The sound effects were also good. And of course I had to say the second time, the visual effects were stunning! Btw, there was no post end-credit scene at all in the movie. Though the ending did hint of possible sequels if the movie is successful enough.
So perhaps if I had read the manga, or saw the series, or even the animated movie earlier, the topic of this film could be easier to understand and I could enjoy it more. In conclusion, if you are looking for a cool sci fi action thriller movie and you could disregard the dark tone and the heavy premise, then you should be able to enjoy the movie. But if you have never heard or read or know about this like me, then perhaps the enjoyment would be lesser. The choice is yours.
Mike's movie moments rating: 3 out of 5 stars