Ghost in the Shell Movie 2015 Review & Characters - Cyberpunk Action


  • Episodes : Movie
  • Genre : Action, Mecha, Sci-Fi
  • Airing Date : June 20, 2015
  • Producers : Production I.G.

Kōkaku Kidōtai Shin Gekijōban Preview / Plot (No Spoilers)

This movie picks up directly after the events of episode 10 of Ghost in the Shell Arise: Alternative Architecture. We reunite with Kusanagi and the rest of Section 9 as they continue to track down Firestarter.

I would encourage everyone to watch Alternative Architecture so that you have a better understanding of the events taking place in Evangelion. I watched the short series myself, 10 episodes, and still had some trouble following the story.

You can click here to read my review on Alternative Architecture.

Who does Kōkaku Kidōtai Shin Gekijōban cater to?

First and foremost, this movie was made for fans of the Ghost in the Shell franchise. It is the first feature film to be released since GITS Stand Alone Complex: Solid State Society, which came out in theaters in 2006.

This film was aimed at fans of fighting scenes and explosions. The espionage and sleuthing scenes are thrown in for good measure. But, by and large the main attraction is action.

Whatever your feelings were on Alternative Architecture they'll carry over to this film. If you enjoyed the series then the new film will deliver a high octane experience set in the Arise universe. If you thought the series was lackluster, then I apologize, but this film will fall short of your expectations for a worthy successor to the previous movies.

What's so appealing about this piece of work.

As I briefly mentioned above, action is what this film does right. The close quarters combat and gunplay look awesome. It's a good thing that most of the characters have prosthetic limbs because they take some serious damage and lost appendages left and right.

Also, the explosions in this film are over the top. A few times I thought something had blown up completely only to hear a few more explosions that rose to uncomfortably loud levels. "Evidence destroyed. No survivors remain. I get it already!"

This is reminded me of classic summer blockbusters. Definitely check it out if you're interested in that type of film.

Ghost in the Shell New Movie Trailer

Kōkaku Kidōtai Shin Gekijōban Main Characters List

Motoko Kusanagi

Voice Actor : Sakamoto Maaya

She is a twenty something year old "cyberized" woman with unique freedoms. Because she has a prosthetic body and can hack into virtually anything connected to the Net, she should be under constant surveillance and abide by strict government regulations. However, that is not the case.

Motoko has now become the full-fledged leader for the Section 9 unit. Her subordinates now trust her implicitly and back her up no matter what it takes. This is important because the stakes are higher than ever and every member is pushed to the limit by this new threat.

In this film, we learn more about Kusanagi’s past. Specifically, we get a glimpse into her time spent in the orphanage asylum/institute. Also, we learn that she has a deep connection to Kurtz.

Lieutenant Colonel Kurtz

Voice Actor :Asano Mayumi

She is the head of the federal 501 Organization. The organization is the one who gave Kusanagi her body and employed her skills before she joined Section 9. Her role was reoccuring in the series, but her background was never touched on. So, in the film we learn that she attended the same institute that Kusanagi did. They were both children who were experimented on and "cyberized".

Her actions have been shady throughout Arise. That air of mystery and distrust follows her into Evangelion as well. In the film she takes part in an incident that has dire repercussions for the country and possibly the entire world.

Batou

Voice Actor :Matsuda Kenichirou

Batou has been a fan favorite of the franchise. He continues his role as Kusanagi's second in command. He is the quiet but powerful agent who protects his commander when she is in over her head.

He gets his time to shine several times throughout the animated film. He showcases his leadership abilities and combat expertise on various occasions. You can think of Batou as the calm and steady soldier who is respected by his peers. He holds the unit together when Kusanagi gets caught up in her own personal issues or has sustained too much damage to physically lead her team.


Contains Spoilers

Kōkaku Kidōtai Shin Gekijōban Review

I have to be honest and start off by saying that I missed many of the film's subtleties because of my lack of Japanese knowledge. I know enough to decipher what the dialogues were about and to understand key phrases. But, I missed some information about why certain attacks were taking place. Even if I could have pieced together the story a bit more... it wouldn't have changed my overall experience.

I know that the bombing of the prime minister, the head of the Toua Union, and Kurtz is the big disaster that was shown in the trailers and that spurs this new battle that Section 9 is thrown into. Apparently, the prime minister and the union head were fighting over the future of cyborgs. The main issue was whether the now “old” types would stay in use or if the new prototype would become the standard.

Also, the big reveal or “twist” in the movie was that Kurtz actually faked her death in that explosion. Her real body (if such a thing exists in GITS) was actually that of the white-haired girl in the orphan institute. On top of that, she was the one who was manipulating the replica of Kusanagi. It was an interesting development but not enough to make the film great.

I would love to say that the movie was amazing and that it made my experience watching Alternative Architecture worthwhile. But, it didn't. Though the movie was entertaining, it didn't break any new ground for animated films. It took a lot of "cool scenes" from films and other anime and incorporated them into this new movie. It executed those well, but it didn't bring anything new to the plate.

It was interesting to see the secluded island where they experimented on Kusanagi, Kurtz, and other children. But, that was about the most intriguing aspect. Finding out that a Kusanagi clone was committing these terrorist attacks was cool, but they didn't give the clone a real personality. They could have easily implanted the Firestarter virus to give it false memories and a very interesting outlook on humanity. Definitely a missed opportunity there.

In the final moments the team was called into action on a new mission. So, I take that as a sign that if the movie does well they’ll extend the Arise universe a bit more. But, I wouldn’t hold my breathe for it.

The film was entertaining, it was exactly what I expected, but I can't recommend it to anyone who didn't enjoy Alternative Architecture.

1. Kusanagi Deals with the Heist

The opening heist sets the bar early for action and suspense. It was great to see Kusanagi calmly subdue several soldiers without having to immediately resort to guns. She uses some slick grappler movies and hand to hand combat to take them down. She proves that she was the original bad-ass long before Black Widow made her splash in films.

2. Batou in Man-Mode

There are a few times when Batou steps in to protect his superior. But, my favorite was when he jumped in front of her and effectively stopped a bullet with his hand (destroying his prosthetic arm in the process). Then he proceeded to Tiger Knee the enemy soldier in the chest!

3. Kusanagi’s Escape

It was a pretty intense moment when Kusanagi was overcome by her former 501 soldiers. They were cold and merciless when it came to attacking her and trying to capture her. At the same time she was undergoing mental attacks from two creepy, twin girls.

There was no time and few options for her escape. The scene climaxed with her shooting the windows and jumping through them only to have her body fall nearly 10 stories. I cringed when her body make a disgusting thump when it finally hit the ground. (I know she has a prosthetic body, but stil...)


Again, the movie was enjoyable because I entered the theater with the right mindset. I knew it would be very similar to Alternative Architecture, and I had the feeling it would focus on action and not really dig deep into the "cyber" issues.

Unfortunately, I probably stepped into the Ghost in the Shell universe by watching the weakest representations of what the franchise has to offer. I'll have to remedy that by watching the older series and movies.

I hope this review was helpful for you guys. I wish I had a better grasp on Japanese, so that I could have explained the narrative and broke it down for you a bit more. But, all I can do is keep studying and provide better reviews for you guys in the future. Thanks again for reading and comment below with your thoughts on this review, trailers for the movie, or the Arise series in general.

Javier Garcia

Writer

Author: Javier Garcia

Hey guys! I'm a huge fan of anime and video games. I used to be a competitive fighting game player (search my name in YouTube). So, I guess it was natural for me to make my way over here to Japan. I teach English, write anime articles, and put together videos when I have time. I hope you enjoy the content we've created for you here at Honey's Anime!

Previous Articles

Top 5 Anime by Javier Garcia


Recommended Post

Ghost in the Shell Arise: Alternative Architecture Review & Characters - What is a Ghost?

Recommended Post

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG Review & Characters – Maybe My Ghost is Whispering to Me.

Recommended Post

[Honey's Crush Wednesday] Top 5 Motoko Kusanagi(Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex) Highlights