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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 18 July 2017
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on 13 June 2017
Case designs are amazing and printed externally and internally. Like how the information card, that wraps the case, fully wraps the bottom of the case to create a firm and stable fit, rather than Studio Canal's Ghibli releases that slide around a lot more easily.
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on 26 May 2017
As advised and just what I wanted, would recommend seller to all.
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on 20 May 2017
It's definitely a great anime film. Bought it before going to watch the live-action at cinema and I really enjoyed them both. Anime is a lot deeper, the story has more to offer, animation is great, so is the soundtrack, but the live-action is easier to diggest and extremely beautiful too. Definitelly holds up to the anime. The franchise is a great watch for anyone that likes sci-fi.
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Ghost in the Shell is a science fiction classic. Despite being clearly inspired by other sci-fi, it brought many new ideas of its own to the genre and has been copied much in the decades since its release. There would be no Matrix without Ghost in the Shell.

The movie is also a masterpiece of visual and aural design, which should make for an amazing blu-ray. Sadly the reality is something quite different. Picture quality is really weak, with incredibly washed out blacks which make for an image which just looks incorrect. I doubt this was Mamoru Oshii approved. It's also very grainy. Then we have the audio, which is in 2.0 channel Dolby Surround Pro Logic. Yes, 2 channel. A 5.1 mix exists, but Manga Video couldn't be bothered to acquire it for this anniversary release. A great way to treat the movie which brought Manga Video so much success. There is a 5.1 dub on here if that's your thing, but it's not for me.

Extras are completely non existent. There is a very, very small booklet included with a few interviews in it, but that's your lot.

For a celebratory anniversary release it seems all Manga could be bothered to do was put the disc in a Steelbook case. It's a weak release and a disappointing way to treat such a cinematic masterpiece.
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on 4 May 2017
My 16yo seems to like it...
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on 20 February 2017
Really excellent film - impressive 'manga' animation especially considering the date it was produced (well before the CGI we know today got going) and extremely thought provoking in respect of AI and the nature of the human mind, all set in an action-intensive context. Condition of the product was excellent. Haven't seen the live action version of this film that was recently released, but I doubt it could top this version!
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on 28 January 2017
Ground breaking animation from Japan. Currently in production as a live action movie. Essential anime (along with Akira & Spirited Away)
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on 16 November 2016
I had this recommended to me and see it's highly rated and has been veryinfluential by some reviewers butme, I don't like manga and the impossible hulks & naked women / violence etc : Blade Runner said it clearer and more stylishly
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 25 October 2016
There are plenty of half-baked (and fully baked) analyses of the deeper meanings behind this film (and its associated series, the Stand Alone Complex 1st and 2nd Gig/Solid State Society etc) that aren't really worth reprising. Suffice to say that the GitS milieu is a future world with national rivalries still going on while society itself is ever more merged by connected cybersystems and modified individuals capable of tapping into the big data that underpins society, all the while questioning what it means to be human to an ever greater degree. In amongst this there are individuals intent on everything from petty crime to grand criminal acts, who are unafraid to subvert and exploit systems and people (to the extent of "hacking" individuals) to pursue their schemes.

A crack team of modified intelligence operatives is directed by a task force (Section 9, that perhaps occupies a similar space to MI6 but without the subtlety) to engage a criminal mastermind known as the Puppet Master, and this process eventually reaches a showdown in a deserted part of town.

Part of the fun of the journey through the plot is all the tech that is used, from thermal masking to the cyber-implants grafted into the team themselves, as well as into the back-office staff who run operations in real-time (fabulous modified hands, etc). This all adds to a sense that tech really is taking over, and a lot of the team's more philosophical interludes focus on this tension between the biological/spiritual and the tech. Nevertheless it is all used to make progress in the investigations into hackings, killings, and betrayals.

A key attraction of anime to me is the sense of observation that goes into the animation. The best anime will incorporate details that seem obvious but which are phenomenally easy to overlook if you were trying to recreate a cartoon scene for yourself (such as rain running along cables and dripping from the low points). The result is often deceptively simple scenes that feel real and which you feel you're inhabiting, and when the story stops itself for a moment and launches into a scene that re-immerses you into the city, or setting up for a key moment such as interception of a vehicle and setting up the snipers and road blocks, there's a tremendous sense of place. It takes a gutsy director to stop the action for a five-minute tour of a city (to some tremendous music by Kenji Kawaii) that is so utterly immersive that it creates a spell of its own, or to show the minutiae of establishing a road block and the teams moving into position. This is where I think GitS scores big - it sets convention aside and tells its story in its own distinctive style. If you get along with that style you'll be thrilled (you must like detail, and prepare to be confused for a while until things become clear), but it isn't for everybody.

It is moderately "grown up" anime, and while it isn't especially cerebral along the lines of later anime productions, it does make some interesting concepts about human/machine integration come to life, as well as telling a rapid-fire story of espionage and intrigue as it goes.

This film was given a mild makeover years later, to appear as Ghost In The Shell 2.0 Redux [DVD] which was a better buy since it contains not only the made-over movie, but this original version too. There have been some complaints about the transfer of the old movie in the Redux set, but my copy looked okay to me, with the (extremely minor) anime glitches showing up in both versions.

Moving on to the second movie, Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence [DVD] is not such a great idea plot-wise. The animation is superb, as usual, but the plot is at once pointless and flat while in parts it is actually ludicrously overblown. For me, the best part of the GitS system of films and episodes (the Stand Alone Complex sets) is this very first movie, either in its original form or with the mild makeover.
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