Sunday, October 12, 2008

Ghost in the Shell (GTS the movie)

First of all I would like to apologise for the length between anime reviews. As is usually the case when I decided to use the abundance of free time that I had at work I got snowed under. But all of that is due to change as I have gotten a part time job so I should have some free time that is until I run out of money and have to get a full time job.

GTS was released in 1995 it was directed by Mamoru Oshii and was adapted from the manga by Masamune Shirow. In order to cram the manga into an 82 minute film the movie excludes the subplots and focuses solely on the puppet master plot. Also the movie was set in Hong Kong unlike the manga and the TV series. And the writing in the scenery is Chinese Hanzi not Japanese Kana. The film was hailed as a success and applauded for being the first anime to seamlessly blend cell and computer animation in the west. In contrast in Japan the movie was not a success as not may people want to see the movie.

The movie opens with Major Kisangani (in Section 9) on the top of a sky scraper spying on a meeting. Between a foreign diplomat and an important programmer; Section 6 bust in on the meeting. At which point the diplomat uses his immunity to get out of being arrested. The Major who by now is waiting outside the window kills the diplomat. Later in the film Section 9 is on the hunt for the puppet master who has been accredited with the ghost hacking of the prime ministers sectary and others. When the puppet master gives himself up to Section 9 and Section 6 steals him back the Major goes on the chase to find out what Section 6 are trying to hide.

I saw this anime a few years after it came out and I loved it and still like it to this day. Back in the day (the late 90’s) this movie stood out and I felt that it was on a par with Akiar. Now I know the movie is short but I think this adds to the effect of the fast pace of the movie. And those of you that have only watched the TV series will notice the lack of a lot of the characters that are in the TV series. I feel this is a classic and is one of the anime movies that everyone should watch. But beware the ending sort of leaves you hanging. Now some trivia the opening in the movie where the writing is in green number code is the computer coding for all of the productions staff’s names. Also the makers of the Matrix also took this coding from the anime and used it in their movie. The director decided to make the Major’s eyes not blink (unlike most anime where the characters eye’s blink) in order to make the Major more doll like.