Ghost In The Shell
The pre- George Lucas’d version
Release Date: OUT NOW! 1995 | 15 | 83 minutes | £ 29.99 ( Blu- ray Steelbook) Distributor: Manga Entertainment Director: Mamoru Oshii Cast: Akio Ōtsuka, Atsuko Tanaka, Iemasa Kayumi, Kôichi Yamadera, Tamio Ōki
If Akira is
the Star Wars of anime, then Ghost In The Shell is its Blade Runner: the anime movie the cool kids prefer. It’s a cyberpunk thriller infused with the kind of existential angst that would be pretentious wibble in a standard Hollywood movie, but put through a Japanese cultural filter feels deeply philosophical. Packed with cyborgs, cyberterrorism and bloody action, it transforms hardware, combat and cityscapes into painted poetry. It’s hard as nails with a soft core.
Until now it’s never been on Blu- ray outside of Japan. Not the real version, anyway. The mongrel Ghost In The Shell 2.0 Redux ( 2008), with its ill- advised CGI, has been available here, but now, mercifully, the original is out in the UK in a limited edition.
Based on the same master copy used for the Japanese Blu- ray, it arrives pure and untweaked. The English soundtrack is in 5.1 DTS- HD, but the Japanese track is the slightly less crisp 2.0 PCM – the same as on the Japanese disc, so we’re not being deprived.
You don’t need to like anime to love Ghost In The Shell, just decent science fiction.
Extras: The actual disc is disappointingly vanilla, but you do get a 24- page Making Of booklet featuring an all- new interview with Oshii and more. Dave Golder The numbers you see in the opening credits are actually the names of the crew written in computer code.
“Might as well wash this window.”