April 1, 2009

Justify My Netflix: Ghost In The Shell

(Like many Netflix customers, I too can get quite lax with the timely watching and returning of my movies, which of course defeats the entire purpose of having a flat-rate rental plan in the first place. To combat that, I am now writing standardized mini-reviews of each and every movie I end up watching through Netflix, both instantly and on DVD. Don't forget, all previous 'Justify My Netflix' reviews can be found on CCLaP's main movie page.)

Ghost In The Shell (1995)
Today's movie: Ghost In The Shell, 1995 (Amazon | IMDB | Netflix)

Why I added it to my queue: Because of it being a major hallmark in the history of anime/manga/Japanimation. Because of it being one of the first anime projects in history designed specifically to appeal to American and British audiences. Because I barely know anything about anime at this point (yeah, I know, shame on me), so am using Netflix's rapidly growing amount of "instant movies" to get myself caught up on the canon.

The reality: Pretty good, although admittedly the reason I'm not a big anime fan is that they all tend to blur into one big storyline in my head: they all seem to somehow vaguely be about naked teenage girl/cyborg combos with dozens of wires coming out of them, battling sinister secret government agencies desperately trying to control the latest Japanese metaphor for atomic-bomb fears, with this movie being no exception. As with many anime projects, I found this good material to be playing in the background while I did computer chores, but a little silly whenever I'd stop and pay too much attention.

If I had watched it when it first came out: I would've been amazed by its now-clunky combination of traditional and computer animation, the first major film in history to do such a thing.

Strangest piece of trivia: Director Mamoru Oshii includes a shot of a basset hound in every movie he makes.

Worth your time? If you're an existing anime fan, or a newbie looking to 'enter the rabbithole' of the manga world, by all means. If not, proceed with caution and a grain of salt.

Filed by Jason Pettus at 12:58 PM, April 1, 2009. Filed under: Movies | Reviews |