For some undefined reasons, Hollywood shows much interest in bringing popular Japanese Manga into live-action movie. However, almost all of the adaptation failed. Many fans are yelling because frequently Hollywood create their own story instead of fully adapting the original story. Not only that, the “white-washing” issue is also becoming a problem. Hollywood usually change the Japanese (and Asian) main role into a white person. of course, many hardcore fans will be disappointed but still, the studio keeps doing it from time to time. The Ghost in the Shell is the latest “victim” of the white-washing. Fans demand a Japanese actress to play the main role but I think ScarJo is more than enough for that.
The film starts when the vast majority of humans are augmented with cybernetics in the future. Human are enhancing various traits like vision, strength, and intelligence. Along with that advancement, Hanka Robotics establishes a secret project to develop a mechanical body, or “shell”, that can integrate a human brain rather than an AI. In the same time, Mira Killian, the sole survivor of the cyber terrorist attack, is chosen as the test subject. Hanka CEO, Cutter, decides to use Killian as a counter-terrorism operative. She is now a member of anti-terrorist bureau Section 9. She is working alongside operatives Batou and Togusa under Chief Daisuke Aramaki. One day, the team successfully thwarts a terrorist attack on a Hanka business conference. Killian is successfully destroying a rogue mechanical geisha after it murders a hostage.
However, she has been experiencing hallucinations after that. She is becoming increasingly bothered by her past. The geisha was actually hacked by an unknown entity, Kuze. Killian then breaks protocol and “dives” into its AI for answers. The entity attempts a counter-hack, and Batou is forced to disconnect her. The two trace back the hacker to a Yakuza nightclub but the plan goes failed. Cutter is threatening the team to shut down Section 9. The team tracks down Kuze once again into a secret location but he has Killian captured. He reveals that Killian is a robot with fake memories. He urges her to question her own memories. The truth comes when she follows the address of her daughter, Motoko Kusanagi. She also reunite with Kaze and recall their past lives as anti-augmentation radicals. Cutter commands the team to terminate her in any means. He deploys a “spider-tank” to kill them but Killian and the team can execute him in final fight.
When Paramount announces that they will bring Ghost in the Shell into the big screen, I am very excited about it. Ghost in the Shell is like Death Note, both bring sensitive theme and complex story but very interesting to follow. Personally, I like the live-action adaptation, especially when Scarlett Johansons take the role as sexy female cyborg. Overall, I think Ghost in the Shell is slick, full of action and visually stunning. I have no idea why people hate it. I just think it is okay to not being very similar with the original cult manga. For me, the film is still enjoyable and worth-watching.
Producers: Ari Arad, Steven Paul, Michael Costigan
Directors : Rupert Sanders
Writers : Jamie Moss, William Wheeler, Ehren Kruger
Starring : Scarlett Johansson, Michael Pitt, Pilou Asbæk, Chin Han, Juliette Binoche