Ghost in the Shell (2017): Please Don’t Suck

Ghost in the Shell

I’ve been following the promotional campaign the soon-to-be-released live-action Ghost in the Shell with moderate skepticism for some time now.

As we all know, it stars Scarlett Johansson as the once-Asian character the Major, a robotic police lady that is often at odds with clothing.

Aside from the studio experimenting with computer programs and futuristic algorithms to Asian-ify a “minor background character” (instead of, oh I don’t know, hiring Asian actors), the press for this movie has been relatively muted. No one has yet to say — or even suggest really — whether the movie is complete garbage, supremely awesome, or just okay.

Ghost in the Shell

I am hoping of the best, of course, as this could potentially turn out to be just as special as the 1995 anime original of the same name. But in a post-John Wick world, that action had better fucking be on-point, son.

Admittedly I’ve only seen the original 1995 anime, so I’m not incredibly well-versed when it comes to the overall lore as fleshed out in the manga, animated shows, or even the video games. But from what I’ve seen in the trailers thus far, it looks like a spitting image of key scenes from the original anime, for better or worse, with a bunch of other shit that also looks cool.

I mean, a robot-looking Geisha. I can just hear the weeaboo boners a-bonering.

Ghost in the Shell

In fact, my only real reason to give pause it Scarlett Johansson herself. Because, although incredibly wooden and robotic in most of her movies to date, I kind of feel like that is working against Johansson here — despite the fact that the Major is  a somewhat stilted, low-key character. Johansson’s line reading for the joke about making her better next time, and the subsequent forced smirk, feel really cheesy very poorly delivered — even beyond her normal repertoire.

Then again, she’s charming as fuck in the Marvel movies, so I’m not going to let one flat joke sully my genuine anticipation for this movie.

But really at this point, as long as it doesn’t turn out even half as bad as Aeon Flux, I will be a happy camper.

Ghost in the Shell opens February 28th, 2017, and you can see a slew of trailers below.

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