TL;DR – Filled with excited characters, and interesting action, it is almost a great film, that is until it fails to stick the landing
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
Alita: Battle Angel is one of those films that has been bubbling in and out of
the film scene for almost twenty years now. It would get so close to being made
and then another setback, and once it was filmed we would get these little titbits
every month or so. With all this, I was
wondering what we would actually get with the final product because I had not seen the original Manga it is based on so
I was coming in blind. Well now that I have had some time to think through it,
I can say that it is a film with some truly beautiful moments, some really
intense ‘oh damn’ moments, and also is a movie that it falls into the same trap
as many films these days and sacrifices the narrative of this film to set up potential
sequels in the future.
So to set the scene, in the far future the Earth is covered in large sky cities
until one day called ‘The Fall’ everything came crashing down bar one city
called Zalem. With the Earth devastated many flock
to the one remaining bastion of civilization creating the great Iron City that
sprawls out underneath Zalem. No one from the Iron City can enter Zalem, but
they all work for the city, in the farms, factories, or as Hunter-Warriors who
are bounty hunters in a world where the police no longer exist. In the centre
of Iron City is the junkyard, where the people of Zalem throw out all their
junk raining it down on the city below. One day Dr Dyson (Christoph Waltz) was scavenging
the junkyard for parts for his cybernetic limbs clinic when he comes across a
cyborg core with a still functioning brain. He brings her home and repairs her body when she awakes she has no idea what her
name was, or what her past was, but she accepts the name Alita (Rosa Salazar)
and begins to learn about the dangerous world around her.
TL;DR – This feels like a very respectful translation of the manga, but that also shows that what works on the page does not always work on the screen.
Score – 2 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene near the start of the credits
Have you ever watched an adaption of something and gone “this looks like a faithful adaption but it just not for me”? Well, I had that experience this week with JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure. I should start by saying that I am coming to this film not having read the Manga or seen the Anime, so beyond the name recognition I had no idea what I was walking into. As such, this is a review coming from a first-time entrant into the world of Stands, and how well the film did bringing me into this universe. Manga and Anime are one of the areas that have yet to really find its feet when adapted to live action on the big screen, especially when it is Hollywood doing the adaptation, see Ghost in the Shell (see review), and the less said about Dragonball Evolution the better. Like video game adaptations it just feels like it is missing it moment genres like comic books have had. With that in mind, today we are going to take a look at what things translated well into film and what aspects really didn’t.
TL;DR – This is a difficult film to review as it excels in so many different ways, the music, visuals, and it really nails the aesthetics, but something is missing and it just felt more ‘safe’ than anything else.
Score – 3 out of 5 stars
So it’s the future and the world has moved towards merging the biological and the machine with people adapting themselves with cybernetic implants. However, this is only augmentation, but now the supposed next step in human development is here, with a human brain inserted into a robot body, a ghost within the shell. Is this the next stage in human existence or simply a weapon being released into the world, a saviour or a curse? This is the set up for Ghost in the Shell a movie adaption of the original manga series of the same name. Well it has been a rocky launch for Ghost in the Shell, and we’ll get to that issue in a moment, but first I need to take a moment to explain my relationship with Ghost in the Shell before talking about its positives, and then we’ll get into what didn’t work.