What works in anime doesn't always translate well into live action. So trying to rate the movie on its own I would say: visually stunning, interesting take on the original story, entertaining action sequences. But on the other side of the coin: the movie tries too hard to adhere to specific sequences of the anime when it should have more freedom to bring it's own interpretation of the technological advancements. The characters move and feel more like Pinocchio than next gen cyborgs. Motoko can move seamlessly during high action sequences but stomps around with all the grace and flexibility of a dr who metal metal man to get anywhere else.
Infuriatingly infantile adaption of the source material. I wasnt expecting much at all, and would've been OK with an action movie version of the original, which is something that could be made and still have a reasonable sized American audience. But this version didn't seem to understand the source material at all, and has none of the rich ambiguities that define the first movie. It shot for shot steals whole sequences from the original. I could go on, but it's just better avoided.
I have never watched the original anime so can't say if this is a worthy adaption. There were a lot of talks about whitewashing with Johansson being cast in the lead. Well, that worked for me as she was the reason I hired the movie. As far as a sci-fi goes, it is passable, visually stunning and reasonable action sequences but the pace is slow, certainly no edge of the seat stuff or surprises.
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