In anticipation for the release of the live action remake of Ghost In The Shell, starring Scarlett Johansson, I sat down and revisited the original 1995 anime movie (directed by Mamoru Oshii) based on the manga series (written and illustrated by Masamune Shirow). When it comes to anime I am no expert, but anybody that has delved into the genre has surely seen Ghost In The Shell ranked among the top 10 of must watch lists. This right here inspired a lot of sci-fi films including The Matrix trilogy, Surrogates, etc.
It has been a decade if not longer since I watched it, I even enjoyed some episodes of the Stand Alone Complex series back in the day, but alas my memory did not provide much more than “it was badass”, and upon viewing again I must say I agree. If you’re not into naked robot chicks blasting guns on fools then I don’t know what to say. One thing that struck me is the amount of nudity in this movie, then realizing the remake is only PG-13 makes me guess Scarlett wasn’t having those type of scenes, but why market it to a younger audience? Surely those that enjoy it enough to check out the anime should probably have an idea what they’re getting into, because it’s ass and titties everywhere.
The actual story of Ghost In The Shell itself is a tough one to absorb. The 1995 film follows the “Puppet Master” story line, a complex conspiracy where the security agency Section 9 tracks a mysterious hacker in a world of future tech. Our protagonist herself is a consciousness in a “shell” aka a cybernetic body that humanity uses to exist within their internet like reality. In short, it is bonkers in the best way to blow your mind.
The movie has always been praised for its amazing visuals, and while I will admit a lot of the animation is dated at this point, there really are some incredible sequences and beautiful imagery. Not to mention the tripped out hacker style cuts throughout the film.
If you’re looking to get into anime this is definitely a great starting point I would rank it up there with the likes of Akira, Blood, Perfect Blue, etc. etc. Overall just a bad ass flick with all of the essentials for a good time; boobs, guns, and robots. What’s not to love?