Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence (Blu-ray/DVD Combo + UV)
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From groundbreaking director Mamoru Oshii comes the award-winning second installment of the high-action movie series, Ghost in the Shell. The Major is still missing, not a trace of her Ghost in the system, but Batou's search for her will have to wait.
In the year 2032, advances in cybernetic technology and genetic research have opened the world to possibilities once only dreamed of. Humans can be fitted with cybernetic modifications, download their brains into permanent robot bodies, or bring home their own intimate robotic companion-it's a life of luxury. Or so it seems. A rash of gruesome murders begins to plague the city and with every lead comes more questions. The culprits? The beloved robotic companions programmed to obey. How does a robot with such basic programming learn the deadly art of murder? Agent Batou and his partner, Togusa, must figure it out before the problem spreads.
The more they search for answers, the deeper the rabbit hole runs. In this case wrought with scandal, danger, and mystery, they'll find themselves in situations unlike any other.
The Making of Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence
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Top Customer Reviews
The film looks great. I really like the grain on the image, reminds me of old 80s sci-fi flicks.
The English subtitles for the Japanese track appear to be DIRECT, literal translations, so a lot of nuance is lost and some of the sentences end up being quite awkward. They get a few names wrong (Fox is supposed to be Locus Solus). And there are a few times when they get who is saying what wrong totally wrong, like the dialogue between Ishikawa and Batou in the car. So either turn the subs off or watch the dub. I paid $2 for this, so I'm not complaining; just FYI.
I disagree in that assessment, particularly when it comes to Ghost in the Shell 2. I recently picked up the new Blu Ray with the English dub and rewatched both films, and they really feel like they form a complete whole. Both films are structurally very similar, and each depicts the impact of a huge change in the life of the central character. The first movie focused on the Major, in the second it is Batou who anchors the film. One of the prevalent complaints about the movie is that it gets bogged down in philosophy quotes and doesn't have enough action. While there are certainly more attributed quotes in this movie than the first, they all matter to the story. As for action, this movie has 2 major action sequences and 1 shorter one, almost identical to the original. One major difference between this movie and the first is that there is a much heavier use of CG effects. While they've aged fairly well, they do at times distract because they don't mesh completely with the traditionally animated segments. That's about the biggest issue I have, and thankfully it never gets as bad as the horrific 'revised' CG that was attempted in Ghost in the Shell 2.0.
But enough on the negatives, real or perceived. What GITS 2 gives us is a coda to the first movie, showing Section 9 in the aftermath of the Major merging with the Puppetmaster. What follows is, like the original, a variation of a story from the original comic. As Section 9 investigates a rash of sex bots turning on their owners, Batou is becoming a source of concern for the other members of Section 9. As he and Togusa follow the trail to the root of the gynoid defects, the movie revisits the ideas of what constitutes a soul.
The core narrative of the movie is actually rather straightforward, with far less of a central reveal than the first movie. Instead, the film focuses on Batou and Togusa, and what their perspectives reveal about themselves. As characters, they are vastly different in almost every respect, and the film uses that gulf to consider life, death, and existence. This is a movie that wants you to think and consider what is being said, and it rewards repeat viewing. Mamoru Oshii has said that he did not want the movie to be considered a sequel, but it really works better with the first film in mind. While it exists as a separate entity, much of the emotional and philosophical impact would be lost viewing it as a standalone feature. In similar fashion to how Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace form an arc of James Bond changing from love and loss, Ghost in the Shell and Innocence show us Batou as a man changed by his experiences in knowing and losing the Major. It's a journey worth experiencing.
Although I am pleased to get this, I find the blu-ray version is not that much better than the enhanced DVD version. The picture quality is a little sharper and brighter, but that's about it. Maybe it's the date of the movie which came out around 2004. Maybe the transfer could have been better. The sound is richer, of course, on the blu-ray version.
Despite my criticism, this is the version to get now. Although the plot is hard to follow, the visuals speak for themselves. This is one the most stunning animations every produced. I've read that the 5 minute parade scene took a year to make! It may help to read the plot summary on Wikipedia first so you can better understand the plot while viewing it. Anime or animation fans should add this to their collection.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
While I greatly enjoyed the original "Ghost In The Shell" anime, I found...Read more