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Ghost in the Shell 2 (HOLY MACKEREL!!!)

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Ghost in the Shell 2 (HOLY MACKEREL!!!)

Old 09-17-04, 11:35 PM
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Ghost in the Shell 2 (HOLY MACKEREL!!!)

This movie knocked my socks off!

I did do a search and found an anticipatory thread. I hope it’s alright to start one for the reaction to the flick.

The opening (or “hook”) had my jaw slack and my heart pumping by the time Kawai’s music hit for the credits.

I’ve still got a tingling scalp when I think about certain scenes. You definitely get more out of it if you grokked the first one. I read reviews on the transpo' home and they panned the **** out of it. Thing was: I could tell that they’d never read the comic and they had watched the dubbed version.
The critic in particular (San Francisco Bay Area Guardian) cited The Matrix as a seminal cyber-punk movie. Huh?
Also, this guy basically stated that we were overrun with a glut of “machine is to human as human is to machine?” movies as a criticism, citing I Robot of all things.
There are a glut of all sorts of movies (revenge, romance found despite…(whatever), war, etc.) and that doesn’t mean that the subject matter being often used cancels out great structure and incredible art.

That rant out of the way: There was one part (I ain’t spoiling it) where there’s a one to two second realization gap from having seen what you’ve just seen that resonated deep in my head. It’s near the end and it will really only appeal to fans of the first movie, but I forgot where I was and shouted “Awesome!!!” when my mind coalesced what was happening. This was in a tiny theater that was filled with very courteous people. I became highly selfconscious.

The animation (while not seamless between cel and CGI) was spot on! The story will appeal to anyone who really got off on Gibson or Sterling (or Masamune Shirow: They use a subplot from the 1st comic) as the villainous method (plus instigation of plot).

Plus: Best animated dog …EVER! You can tell how much Oshii loves them. I started loving them! What a team of artists!

A googol stars. Highly recommended.

And, yeah. I’m no corporate schill. Some of you will recognize me. So this is actually my review and it is for real.

Last edited by Kudama; 09-17-04 at 11:38 PM.
Old 09-17-04, 11:39 PM
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I seen the trailer tonight on Spike TV,Looks fantastic and cant wait for this to come out,the original is one of my favorite anime's.
Old 09-18-04, 12:55 AM
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I fully agree. Fuck the critics and their mental checklists of what an animated feature is 'supposed' to be. If this movie made them feel stupid or emotionally/philosophically challenged, GOOD! If they were bored, they probably weren't interested in what the film has to say in the first place, or were just expecting more action.

I can't wait for the DVD to experience the multitude of layers and information in the movie and experience new insights. Oshii is a master animator!
Old 09-18-04, 01:51 AM
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Originally posted by Jepthah
Oshii is a master animator!
If you have the patience of a Saint, check out Oshii’s live action stuff.
IMHO …It rocks!

Talking Head was a little too autobiographical and the pace was…well, you decide.

Red Spectacles is good when you’re in the mood for discord. It's actually sweet.
Old 09-18-04, 02:53 AM
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But I HATED Avalon Kudama. And it was actually that film that made me worry about GITS2 because he seemed like his philosophy was going off the deep end. But I think the balance in GITS2 between action and ideas was very right.
Old 09-18-04, 02:55 AM
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Originally posted by Jepthah
I fully agree. Fuck the critics and their mental checklists of what an animated feature is 'supposed' to be. If this movie made them feel stupid or emotionally/philosophically challenged, GOOD! If they were bored, they probably weren't interested in what the film has to say in the first place, or were just expecting more action.
So how about this review?

http://www.villagevoice.com/issues/0437/hoberman2.php

Mind you, this is J. Hoberman, uber-snob critic (and one of the best). And he said, "You can call me fanboy, but this is the best anime I've ever seen."
Old 09-18-04, 10:05 AM
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Dude, it was amazing. I need to go see this again tonight.
Old 09-18-04, 10:38 AM
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Originally posted by Jepthah
But I HATED Avalon Kudama. And it was actually that film that made me worry about GITS2 because he seemed like his philosophy was going off the deep end. But I think the balance in GITS2 between action and ideas was very right.
I was in the other camp on Avalon (maybe I like the deep end, hail Eris and all that) so I had no real worries. I went in thinking "this will rock." and came out thinking ".....!!!!!!!!". (I really feel like spoilers on this one shouldn't even tempt people to look, but there's so many cool things to talk about.)
Old 09-18-04, 01:06 PM
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Originally posted by Grimfarrow
So how about this review?

http://www.villagevoice.com/issues/0437/hoberman2.php

Mind you, this is J. Hoberman, uber-snob critic (and one of the best). And he said, "You can call me fanboy, but this is the best anime I've ever seen."
For every Hoberman you will find one like this:

http://www.chron.com/cs/CDA/moviesto...eviews/2799318

"Portentous and pretentious, Shell 2 crawls along like a machine on low batteries."

So that's why we have opinions. But like I said, this is not the kind of film everyone can love--it's just disappointing to see so many who don't get it at all.
Old 09-18-04, 02:14 PM
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I think the trailer looks great. School, however, is really keeping me busy---and I haven't even seen the original. I know some people hate this question, but is it necessary to see the first before the sequel?
Old 09-18-04, 02:30 PM
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I thought the first one was mediocre. Is this one better or worse? Is it a true sequel?
Old 09-18-04, 06:55 PM
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Originally posted by Corvin
I think the trailer looks great. School, however, is really keeping me busy---and I haven't even seen the original. I know some people hate this question, but is it necessary to see the first before the sequel?
I don't hate that question.

I highly recommend seeing the original first. This one is another expansion of a story arc from the initial manga series. This arc was a lot less significant in the comic but what they added to it was incredible. Not to mention that it illustrated what a great seed of an idea the little segment in the comic was.

I’ve been steeping in the first one since they first let it play in state side theaters, so the effect on me of having seen the first one was probably more intense (because I’ve seen it about 50 times, in every altered and unaltered state of mind I’ve had since then) than it would be if you weren’t a raving lunatic of a fan in the first place.

But! Hellboy impressed a lot of my friends who had never even heard about it. This is probably the same situation. I still recommend renting the first one ASAP, because this is going to have a short theatrical run based on critics that are basically jocks with dictionaries.

I’ll be seeing Sky Captain once next week after work, but I will see this again at least four more times in the theater. (I might even tempt fate and risk getting a bad seat by hitting a weekend show.)

So yeah. Watch the first one first.
Old 09-18-04, 07:17 PM
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I'll be seeing this in the next week or so. Thanks for the read.

I've got a lot of students who are going to go see it this weekend. It'll be interesting to get their reaction come Monday.
Old 09-18-04, 08:08 PM
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I don’t think this will necessarily be a spoiler:

I spent 4 formative years in 4 square Christianity. I know about the Mayan Fifth Sun and the connotations. I have serious issues with mortality. These comics and movies do not mirror my concerns about religion, but they do on a selfish scale. I’m afraid to be checked out. Not because of the pain or the threat of our buddy Lu, but because I don’t want to miss out on the future. I want to keep seeing, hearing, doing ,tasting. Etc….

The loss of it scares me. I’m addicted to being.

This movie didn’t focus in on the loss of life, but it did in a way. If you lose your identity, “you” are dead. I was moved to buzzing tears. I want to be me forever.

Sorry Buddha.
Old 09-18-04, 08:19 PM
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Pretentious²
Old 09-18-04, 08:25 PM
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excellent visuals, very dialogue heavy (some may be bored), i wasn't blown away by it but it was pretty good
Old 09-18-04, 09:22 PM
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Much grass, Kudama. I'll try to rent the original this weekend or sometime during the week. After that, I figure I have a week or two left to get to the theater.
Old 09-19-04, 05:31 PM
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Originally posted by UKingdom
excellent visuals, very dialogue heavy (some may be bored), i wasn't blown away by it but it was pretty good
Yeah, very dialogue heavy, I agree. I had a hard time keeping up and I watch subtitled anime/movies all the time. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that I was feeling dizzy before I went in and am still feeling dizzy now, but who knows. I'd like to see it again when it comes out on DVD, though. I was just confused by a lot of it this time...

I have to say, I for one any not a huge fan of the current trend of mixing CG with hand-drawn elements… it just doesn’t look right a lot of the time.

Last edited by Li; 09-19-04 at 05:33 PM.
Old 09-19-04, 09:36 PM
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^^^ I am with you on that. HOWEVER, it works very, very well thematically with what Oshii's film is dealing with. The whole binary investigation of man/machine carries on to 2d/3d animation and other extrapolations.
Old 09-20-04, 12:19 AM
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Look at Masamune Shirow's artwork in Intron Depot one, two and three.
The disparate CGI fits like a glove when it comes to this guy's stuff.
Old 09-20-04, 12:27 AM
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I dunno. CGI can be very beautiful, but I'd take seeing an elaborate hand-drawn image over a computer generated one any day. There's just something awe-inspiring about hand-drawn that I think is lost with CGI.

Last edited by Li; 09-20-04 at 12:31 AM.
Old 09-20-04, 12:34 PM
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Re: Ghost in the Shell 2 (HOLY MACKEREL!!!)

Originally posted by Kudama

Plus: Best animated dog …EVER! You can tell how much Oshii loves them. I started loving them! What a team of artists!

I was only kina thinking about seeing it before but now, I'm there!!!!
Thanks for the review!!
Old 09-20-04, 05:31 PM
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now I wasn't all that into the first movie, and my hopes that this sequel would be better, well,... not really. I'd have to agree with Pixyjunket statement that I felt this movie was pretentious. Add tedious and just plain baffling. This movie definately falls under visually stunning but ultimately lacking. If the scrpit was as detailed and coherent as the visuals it would have been a definate improvemet.

The best moment in the film for me wasn't even a scene that progressesd the story: the parade sequence. The seemless integration of CGI and 2D animation was truly stunning. In that single scene the animator's created depth, dimension and excitement that the rest of the film simply couldn't achieve.
Old 09-20-04, 11:38 PM
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I loved that part.

All right. These might be spoilers, but not the worst ones in the world:
Spoiler:
The weakest CGI for me was the foot sculpture outside Kim’s place. I don’t think they got the reflections right on what you’d think would be a semi reflective surface.
I thought the scenes inside the mansion, while garish, worked great. Even the gold laminate interior on the front doors. Given the nature of the scene, it added to the dreamlike quality of being hacked into a loop.
This was also beautiful (imo) in the hacking/convenience store scene where he lost his arm.
Some of the most successful were the Angelic Osprey flying in hordes of seagulls and the landing sequence where it did seem like Lucifer descending onto Earth. And the depth of field in the Yakuza den showdown. Actually they did a lot of depth field with CGI throughout. Production I.G utilizes this technique a lot, I’ve noticed. (Or I did now that I think of it.)


I’m not out to insist that this is the coolest for everybody else because I liked it so much, but it’s nice to hear an opposing opinion that’s thought out. I’m not dissin’ anyone here, but I appreciate when people disagree with a fanatic intelligently. (I know I’m a fanatic )
Old 09-20-04, 11:43 PM
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The Red Spectacles is an amazing blend of Jean-Luc Godard and Seijun Suzuki.

Avalon was incredibly disappointing.

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