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on 2 May 2006
I went to see this film in the cinema in France out of curiosity and I was blown away by it. The animation is absolutely superb; a faultless mix of 2D cartoon characters with realistic 3D CGI backgrounds and objects. It sounds like it shouldn't work, but it does, in fact on several occasions I even forgot I was watching an animated film!

As for the story, although it seems like every other line is a proverb, it is very thought-provoking and will keep you thinking long after you have watched it. It deals with existence, humanity , animals, memories and artificial intelligence. Prior knowledge of the story isn't necessary - there is a brief recap at the beginning. Having since watched the first installment, I can safely say that, while the first film had great animation for its time, this version is infinitely better visually and, I might add, has no gratuitous breast shots or close-ups.

Ghost In The Shell Innocence is of a different style to the first film; it has fewer action scenes, focusing more on visuals and the numerous dilemmas thrown up by the question of artificial intelligence, human rights and the laws of robotics. That's not to say that there isn't tension or excitement. A gunfight with the yakuza and souless robot drones are also thrown into the mix. I'm not a fan of anime, but I loved this film - highly recommended.
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on 18 November 2013
Being a blind Ghost in the Shell fan willing to spend money on something I already own, I bought this. It contains both the first and second Ghost in the Shell films, as well as the Ghost in the Shell 2.0 remakey thing, on Blu-ray. I didn't care at all for 2.0, finding the CGI to add nothing to it, so just turn to the original instead.

My version came with a cardboard slip and the two films in their respective Blu-Ray cases, which appears to be different to what others have received.

Buying these two bundled together is cheaper than buying them separate, so it's a great buy. There seems to be some confusion, so just for the record: the original Ghost in the Shell film is included as well as the 2.0 edition.
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on 19 March 2006
This is a film packed with many deep meanings and symbolic languages. Because of its multi-layered nature it will be hard to notice and digest all the fine details and informations it contains at a single viewing.
The director Mamoru Osii has said in one of his interviews that he deliverately made things obscure and hard to understand because he wanted to challenge the viewer to think and reflect on what they have seen, and heard in the film.
I will suggest you watch it once, then watch the interview included in the pack, and read other people's opinions and interpretations on the net (I reccomend you to see the article in Wikipedia too), and having done that come back to the film and watch it again. I promise you that you will be able to see it in a completely new light.
Osii wanted people to interepret the film in their own way, and for it to become personally meaningful to them.

For me among other things this film struck as about the life of the protagonist, Batou. Batou is a man who has a body which is almost all mechanized except a bit of brain, and who can only affirm his existence as a a human by the knowledge of his"ghost", the memory of Motoko, and his dog Gabriel(which is a fully warm-blooded creature completely free from mechanization)For me Osii suggests the way to survive in this modern age when we are increasingly isolating ourselves from society, and begining to lose awareness of our physical body as our life has began to center around the non-physical world of internet.
Lastly as I understand both Japanese and English I would like to give you a few informations about the translation. I think the script for English dub is good, but there are still many words which have been changed. Personally it was interesting for me because I seemed to discover the different side to the film when I switched from one language to another. The English subtitle however is worse than bad; it probably needed to cut back words due to the lack of space.The English voice actors are good, although Kim sounded more sinister in the original Japanese version (especially when he laughed!)
The film is on its own a work of art, with beautiful imagery and evocative music. This film is not for everyone (the director said that himself) but it has certainly had a profound effect on me.
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on 16 September 2009
I honestly don't understand how Manga stuffed the subtitles up. The DVD release was fine. As a previous reviewer noted, Locus Solus was referred to as "Rox" - but they neglected to mention this was only for the first hour of the film. The last half hour they sorted it out.

The first hour of subtitles were just filled with so many glaring errors it'd take me half a day to table them all. But for a few examples:
- When Togusa was introducing Batou to Haraway (and yes they got her name wrong too - Haraday in the subs, Haraway in the spoken version (Japanese and English dub), they posed Togusa's intro as a question to Haraway. Eg "Who is this scary character?", rather than an interrupted intro "And this scary chacter is..."
- When Batou got out of the car with Ishikawa when discussing dog food Ishikawa was talking, reiterating that the wet food is bad. They subtitled it as Batou saying "ok I will try the dry food". Batou was not even speaking.
- When they are called to the murder scene, they say "The victim was an inspector". An inspector of what? They left off "of Locus Solus", which was in the dub and original audio track, as well as the DVD subtitles.

The subtitles are unforgivable rubbish.

Image wise, it was a pretty good reproduction. I've heard others mention compression artefacts on backgrounds but I did not notice any. I did notice noicable banding on the gold haze around the Innocence opening title, which was not present on the DVD.

If you are a sub viewer, avoid this as all costs. If you like dubs, this is probably OK for you.
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on 19 January 2011
An excellent price combined with a proper dubbed track from the English voice cast from GITS: SAC make this purchase a no brainer. Plays on US Blu ray disc (I have played both discs on my Sony BDP-S570) When the lowest price on GITS 2 on the US site is $149.96 new and $115 used makes the purchase of the UK version of these films by a Colonist, such as myself, a must. And yes the subtitle track for GITS 2 is nonsensical compaired to the US subs but I didn't buy it for the subs I bought it for the great dub track.
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on 12 March 2007
The first thing I ought to say here is that if you expect a similar film to the first Ghost In The Shell, you're going to be disappointed. However, if you want a more thought-provoking, visually involved film then you're definitely in the right place.

As I've said, it's not much like the first film. Although the plot retains the same pacing and tension, and the visuals are in the same style, the star of the previous film (the Major) is mostly absent, and instead the plot focuses on Batou, her former police partner. There is still the odd fight scene, but mainly this film focuses on what happens between the violence. Some people may find this offputting, but many will appreciate this change of focus, particularly in an anime film.

However, the film is not worse because of this. Innocence gives insight into a very different mind; this is reflected in the more philosophical plot, and bleaker locales. It develops characters in a far more subtle way to the original, which was fairly subtle already, and gives a genuine insight into the viewer's own life- more so than any other film I have seen.

The imagery used in Innocence is definitely among the greatest that I have seen. The blend of 2D cel animation and 3D CG materials is seamless and they always complement one another to a very high degree. The music is also used to great effect, and the ending theme suits the film perfectly.

Although this is very different to its predecessor, it is still a breathtaking masterpiece, which will stay with you for a very long time. If you haven't seen the original, or if violence is all that it takes to satisfy you, there isn't much here to like. But for everyone else this is a essential purchase.
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on 16 November 2005
This DVD will contain a dubbed English track using the orginal case of the Ghost in the Shell: Stand Along Complex voice actors! Dreamworks should have thought of that! Time to fire up the region free players and get the version that all of use Otaku have been waiting for!
This movie is more like an art film than either the first move or the GitS:SAC shows. It explores the idea of what being human really means when your body is completely man made. Taking place after the Puppet Master case and with Motoko gone, Batou is left to pick up the pieces and continue on... but is he really alone?
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on 2 September 2014
Yes this movie is Region free which means if you live in the U.S. then you can play it. I bought it and tested it out and it works perfectly. I HIGHLY recommend buying this if you live in North America considering the Blu Ray there is out of print and really expensive and the dvd is terrible.
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on 2 April 2013
Both the original and remake of Ghost in the shell as well as the second movie innocence are included in this set and all movies are fantastic. However the picture shows a cardboard sleeve in which you'd expect 2 different blu ray cases with each movie in its own box. However this is not the case as both movies are contained in the same case with no cardboard sleeve. That is the only reason why this purchase did not recieve the full 5 stars from me. I would still recomend these movies but would ask buyers to be aware that the picture shown does not represent the product.
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on 13 March 2005
Absolutely gorgeous sequel to the 1995 cyberpunk anime classic "Ghost In The Shell", itself based on a manga by Masamune Shirow.
Once again we meet up with the members of Japan's "Public Safety Section 9", a special Japanese government anti-crime agency. Major Motoko Kusanagi, who was the first movie's main character, has seemingly disappeared after the events in that movie, and focus has shifted to her old comrade Batou, teamed up with agent Togusa, investigates a series of incidents involving androids gone berserk.
The visuals are beautiful, very rich & detailed 3D CGI backgrounds combined with more traditional cell animation, while the atmosphere created by Kenji Kawai's haunting score is incredible. His score for Innocence was meant as an extension of the original movie's score, which is by no means a bad thing.
People expecting an adrenaline-pumping action fest might be disappointed. There is action, and when it comes it is fast, brutal & violent, but this is not what the movie is about. It moves at a very slow pace, while characters indulge in heavy-handed dialogue, waxing philosophical and quoting sources ranging from biblical psalms to Milton and Confucius, among others.
This will no doubt put off some people, but it's refreshing to see a movie that doesn't regard its audience as brain-deads who can only understand one-liners.
On a more negative note, this American DVD has annoying subtitles, that take up too much space, getting in the way of the image; what's more, they seem designed for the hearing-impaired, which I guess is most considerate, but which is normally saved for a separate sub track. It's just annoying for everyone else.
Still, this movie is well worth it.
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