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Ghost in the Shell (1995)

Ghost in the Shell (1995)


Starring the voices of

Atsuko Tanaka

Akio Otsuka

Lemasa Kayumi


Directed by Mamoru Oshii


When you see this movie for the first time like me, you will join the cult lovers of this manga. Ghost in the Shell is a sci-fi ,cyberpunk thriller set in the mid 21st Century.

Better late than never. When in uni, The Stand Alone Complex was released and all my friends were hooked on it, except me. Truth is, silly me never saw a single episode and did not bother to even see this classic of an animation.

I wonder if I would have liked or enjoyed the complexity in the plot? The whole interfacing between flesh and digital wires and the result of it is what Ghost in the Shell’s deep narration is about. Here is a future where being pure human is a thing that is getting out of fashion and being a cyborg is the new norm.

The plot takes place in 2029, and we get to follow the life of Major Kusanagi, she leads a team of security agents as they deal with complex cyber issues, and this movie is about the most complex of them all the Puppet Master. Her unit’s section is called 9, which is an arm of the government security agency. Before we go deeper into the plot, let me give you a brief, this 1995 anime is based on a manga written by Masamune Shirow between 1989 and 1990. He wrote this psychological thriller using a concept that is so ahead of its time. Everything in the manga is written which such ingenuity that even now in 2021, our world seems to have not caught on.

The Puppet Master is a master hacker, who seems to hack people and use them to further his agenda. In this present world almost, everyone has a form of cyberonic brain, and the puppet master is a master in hacking people and planting false memory.

The Major as we know is also a cyborg, but her origin is not the focus here. She and her team are tasked with stopping the Puppet Master, but the whole chase is causing her to start having some existential crisis. Our whole journey is about the chase and capture of the Puppet Master. We encounter the deeper understanding of what he is trying to achieve and the government’s place in everything with more existential crisis and psychological questions.

First thing I would have to say is, please watch the 1995 version, it is the same as the 2008 version, but I liked the animation here better. Also, the movie embodies the concept of the first volume of the manga and sadly every animated work done after this 1995 movie concerning the Ghost in the Shell world are original stories. The Stand Alone Complex is just as much fun as this movie itself, so don’t be deterred.

After seeing this movie, you will find clues where other movie makers got ideas from, especially the Wachowskis 1999's The Matrix.

After seeing this movie, I would say go see The Stand Alone Complex which is set in an alternate timeline. The second movie which acts like a sequel to this movie (both does not follow the manga) is not that good at all. After The Stand Alone Complex, you should see the Arise which is more about a younger her working with Section 9.

I will also will like to add, I have not seen the movie either, so I have no comment about that.


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