Ghost in the Shell is a hallowed property for anime and manga fans. The sci-fi/action classic is a cornerstone of the culture and it has finally gotten put through the Hollywood machine. How will it turn out? Well, we’ve got our first extended look at the film version courtesy of this new trailer. Give it a watch and prepare for things to get weird.
WOW. It’s clear that the unique design of the series is not being lost in translation. This is one of the most striking visions of the future we’ve seen since Blade Runner. In fact, this movie looks like Blade Runner meets The Matrix. That’s somewhat appropriate as Ghost in the Shell was one of the prominent inspirations for The Matrix. The action scenes in this look stellar and really engaging. As far as the visual component of this movie is concerned, this trailer is incredibly encouraging.
For as bizarre as Ghost in the Shell can get, the story looks to have been streamlined a bit in order to sell it to a wider audience. That’s not a bad thing since we get a fairly clear idea of what the film’s drive will be in this trailer. The Major (Scarlett Johansson) is a cybernetic being who fights bad guys. But, her past isn’t what it seems. An investigation will eventually lead her to discover secrets about her own existence. Fairly basic stuff but it’s the presentation that matters in this story.
Honestly, I was worried about Ghost in the Shell getting a little too watered down for American sensibilities. That does not seem to be the case at all. This looks and feels like a real Ghost in the Shell movie. The fantastical designs and the unabashed sci-fi aesthetics are all there. If they can nail the story, this could be a momentous occasion for anime fans. Seeing Ghost in the Shell done well as a big budget American film could open the gates to other adaptations. We know that Death Note is getting made over at Netflix. This could be the start of a live-action anime boom.
We’ll find out when Ghost in the Shell hits theaters on March 31.