Supergirl season 3 - Ep 10 33 Days
Amount:

Ghost in the Shell

06 Apr 2017 18:05 #53550 by Markiehoe
Markiehoe created the topic: Ghost in the Shell
Has anyone here watched Ghost in the Shell starring Scarlett Johansson?
I just took a quick look at her IMDB page and I have seen every action movie she has ever been in, save this latest one.
I am really crazy about her in action movies but could care less about watching her in other movies.
We Bought a Zoo just might be one of the worst movies I have ever seem.

I really am not excited enough to run out and see this one.
The "whitewashing" bru ha ha doesn't bother me in the least bit.
The producers doubled down to get the best actress to promote a character that barely 1% of North Americans knew about.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Markiehoe
  • Markiehoe's Avatar Topic Author
  • Offline
  • Uberposter of Distinction
  • Uberposter of Distinction
More
06 Apr 2017 19:04 #53552 by Woodclaw
Woodclaw replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell
I'm going to watch it over the week-end and I've every mixed expectations.

On the issue of White-washing I'd like to point out three little facts:
  • According to both the original manga and Arise (the manga/animation that told the birth of Section 9) Motoko Kusanagi is a fake ID and the real origin of the Major is unknown
  • The Major is a full-body cyborg, the only organic parts of her body are the brain and the spinal cord
  • The Major standard body has a basic run-of-the-mill finish (something that every incanation of the franchise showcased) based on a standardized designer look -- an Ikea cyborg if you wish -- something she deliberately choose to blend in
Given all of this she can really look however she like.

(formerly Anon, still Librarian)

"What is the point of having free will if one cannot occasionally spit in the eye of destiny?" ("Gentleman" John Marcone)
The following user(s) said Thank You: Ravens_ghost, Markiehoe, TheOne25

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
07 Apr 2017 19:27 #53562 by brantley
brantley replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell
Anybody here read Japanese? I'm curious as to whether the casting of Johansson has drawn as much fire in Japan as it has here. Tried Googling "Ghost in the Shell" and "Asahi Shinbun," a leading newspaper there, but two items that may be relevant don't show up in English,

--Brantley

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • brantley
  • brantley's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Uberposter of Distinction
  • Uberposter of Distinction
More
07 Apr 2017 23:28 #53565 by TwiceOnThursdays
TwiceOnThursdays replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell

brantley wrote: Anybody here read Japanese? I'm curious as to whether the casting of Johansson has drawn as much fire in Japan as it has here. Tried Googling "Ghost in the Shell" and "Asahi Shinbun," a leading newspaper there, but two items that may be relevant don't show up in English,

--Brantley


From my understanding, it doesn't catch that fire in Japan. (i've looked around with the same question.) But I don't think this means anything. Let me explain.

Someone living in Japan has no problems encountering media where they see themselves represented. They're such a uniform majority, it would never ever occur to them. That's why this doesn't bother them.

To see an American Ghost in the Shell w/ an American lead is just another American movie where they've taken ideas/stories from Japan. They'll watch it as a curiosity to see what we got right. Much as I'd watch a Japanese Supergirl story (which quite frankly might be a bit awesome).

If Japan made their own Supergirl movie and cast a Japanese actress in the lead role, it'd probably made only a mild blip here (though I can guarantee some idiotic comic fanboys would get their panties in a twist).. It's not an American movie and no one would expect any different. Nor is there a sizable native caucasian population in Japan, so it'd be really hard to find a fluent caucasian woman who could act. (Japan is 98.5 native Japanese.)

Ghost in the Shell is an American movie, adapted off a Japanese manga and anime. It's being made in a country with a 6% Asian population (admittedly only about 0.3% Japanese), and whites make up 72%. Few American's speak Japanese, while there are more than a few Japanese actresses that are fluent in English. i.e. these things are not congruent. One would be REALLY HARD to do, the other is just finding the right actress. Movies can cast unknowns in lead roles, even for big budget movies. They could have found a competent Asian actress to play the lead. I think everyone agrees that the actress would not have had Scarlet's star power ... but she would also likely have been $10M cheaper and not involved a 2-3 month delay in shooting where locations and crew were held open at a great expense. Also, I'll wager if the studio had started with the idea of an Asian actress, they'd have been asking different questions from the source material --- resulting in a different movie -- one that might have been better. (more on that below).

But the flack is coming from Americans. That 5% Asian American population doesn't see themselves represented on screen that often and rarely as the lead role. So when a big role comes up, and it's consistently given over to a non-Asian, they start to get upset and go "hey!". It's not like this is the first time, or even the first time in the last year. Coming on the recent trail of Moses, Gods of Egypt, 21, Aloha, and Dr. Strange ... well the issue is hotter than it normally is. (Honestly I get why casting Danny Rand as an Asian American would have made an awesome update to Iron Fist, but casting a white guy for the role is not white washing. I do think it tapped into a similar thing as is happening here though, that frustration is boiling over. Though man, Lewis Tan KILLED in his part in Iron Fist and swapping him in for Rand .. AND updating the story to reflect it I could see easily making a much better show with more exciting martial arts scenes.)

That said, I don't think it played that big of a role in the box office failure of the movie. I don't think it helped any, I just don't think it's why people aren't seeing the movie. Nor is it due to a female action lead. (Asians even went to the movie in the same % they saw other science fiction films, and you'd think that would be the segment most sensitive to this. Stats for that in the deadline article.)

Both these articles talk a bit about the Japanese reaction to the movie, and about the white washing.

deadline.com/2017/04/ghost-in-the-shell-...hitewash-1202061479/
www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2017/04/par...the-shell-box-office

For one pay attention to the # of posts of the #iammajor vs the ghostinshell tags. The people complaining about it don't seem to have the same meida shadow.

I think a key quote is from the end of the Deadline article:

However, most critics didn’t like Ghost because it was cold, boring, thoughtless, and the same old same old next to its futuristic ancestors The Matrix and Blade Runner.


Keeping in mind that I've not (yet) seen the movie, I'll give my reaction and why I've not seen it yet. It seems like they'd lost most of what made the Anime good. There is little philosophy in this movie from the trailers, it's a great looking, but soulless and bland picture that seems to want to get me excited by watching Scarlet bounce around in a body suit. While this seems like an enjoyable way to spend some time, it's a shame to see her dance around in the corpse of a great story.

At the very least the marketing for the movie SUCKS, as it doesn't take much to make me want to run out opening night and watch a sci fi film. I saw Fantastic Four on opening night, I can go see shitty movies!

Maybe the movie is more than that ... but now the movie is out, literally NO ONE is talking about it on any of my geek social media. Well aside from here.

And that's really the kicker for me. I was already seeing too many movies in the theater and would have had to MAKE time to see it. And well, no one is telling me a I NEED to see it. I already feel guilty about not seeing Arrival in the theater (great, like philosophical, low action sci fi? SEE IT). Ghost in the Shell I have ZERO guilt about not seeing. Instead, I re-watched the original anime and I might pick up the manga on Comixology.

So I think the whitewashing didn't help ... but it's not the cause of the shitty box office. OTH, it's probably a good thing if Hollywood thinks that. It's not like a lot of movies with non-white leads haven't been doing pretty well in the box office lately. So a bit of fear impetus to get Hollywood to cast Asians in Asian roles? Probably a good thing.

I just fear that this will bring back the "women can't star in action movies!". I hope Wonder Woman and Atomic Blonde just RAKE in the $$$.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
08 Apr 2017 00:01 #53566 by TwiceOnThursdays
TwiceOnThursdays replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell

Woodclaw wrote: I'm going to watch it over the week-end and I've every mixed expectations.

On the issue of White-washing I'd like to point out three little facts:

  • According to both the original manga and Arise (the manga/animation that told the birth of Section 9) Motoko Kusanagi is a fake ID and the real origin of the Major is unknown
  • The Major is a full-body cyborg, the only organic parts of her body are the brain and the spinal cord
  • The Major standard body has a basic run-of-the-mill finish (something that every incanation of the franchise showcased) based on a standardized designer look -- an Ikea cyborg if you wish -- something she deliberately choose to blend in
Given all of this she can really look however she like.


She can look however she likes. In the manga and the anime she uniformly chose to look Japanese.

Even Ikea has more than one look, and there are going to be non-Japanese ones. She never picks them. (It's also important to note that in most cases she has to reverse engineer the shell to look like the standard model as they have all sorts of military upgrades that are not included in the standard model.)

In other words, everything you said is 100% correct -- but also doesn't mean anything except to prove that she should look Japanese as it was a constant choice of the character.

And even if you claim "oh, no it's not", well then being AVERAGE for the society she is in IS important, and that society is Japanese. (I think this is still true for the movie, judging from other actors and the Geisha bit that is included.)

Now, if during the movie Major swapped bodies back and forth, and we got the impression they were a bit more than clothes -- but still something she likes to change up. THEN, it wouldn't matter. But that's NOT the case in the movie, the manga, or the anime. She does use multiple shells, but does so because her last one is destroyed and she needs a new one.

I doubt Hollywood even actually THOUGHT about it enough to come up with your list. And this hits on what I think the problem is with the movie, it doesn't even seem they grok why it's called "Ghost in the Shell". If they got that part right, I think I'd not mind.

(Keeping in mind I've not seen the movie (yet), so I'm judging the last bit on reviews and the trailers.)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
09 Apr 2017 17:42 #53579 by brantley
brantley replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell
Here's the latest on Japanese reactions:

comicbook.com/anime/2017/04/09/ghost-in-...-japanese-reactions/

--Brantley
The following user(s) said Thank You: shadar, TwiceOnThursdays

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • brantley
  • brantley's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Uberposter of Distinction
  • Uberposter of Distinction
More
09 Apr 2017 21:29 #53580 by shadar
shadar replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell

brantley wrote: Here's the latest on Japanese reactions:

comicbook.com/anime/2017/04/09/ghost-in-...-japanese-reactions/

--Brantley


Clearly, the Japanese anime fans had no problem with Johansen in the role. Some preferred it. I liked the thought that if it had been cast in Japan, some vapid girl-band idol would have been cast. Scarlett is obviously a flexible and experienced actress.

Summary of Japanese anime feedback: Very good visuals and visual design and special effects. But a shallow, weak story line compared to the original anime. Which to their point of view is what you expect from Hollywood: lots of money on effects, very little on writing.

Which is why movies made outside of Hollywood's sphere are so interesting. Low budget, few effects, but a ton of effort put into the writing and directing that is focused on the heart, not the brain.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
09 Apr 2017 22:12 #53581 by brantley
brantley replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell
So it's just white people here complaining about "whitewashing."

--Brantley

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • brantley
  • brantley's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Uberposter of Distinction
  • Uberposter of Distinction
More
09 Apr 2017 22:47 #53582 by lowerbase
lowerbase replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell
After watching Logan, I'll refrain from condemning Hollywood for watering down their movies. Maybe the biggest risk today with any franchise is harming the whole franchise with a single bad movie (cough, ghostbusters)

idk, maybe Logan, as good as it was, was an accident.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
10 Apr 2017 00:30 #53584 by Woodclaw
Woodclaw replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell

brantley wrote: So it's just white people here complaining about "whitewashing."

--Brantley


I don't know for sure, but I remember reading in an article about the work of Osamu Tezuka that when he started making comics there was no real previous reference material, so he draw very rounded eyes (similar to western comic books and cartoons, especially the early Walt Disney) but this didn't create any problem with the audience, who had very little difficulty to identify with the characters. I'm not sure if this indicates that there is less emphasis in Japan on facial features to define a character or what.
Still, one comment I can totally get behind is the idea that having a idol (i.e. a young, often barely legal pop singer) playing the Mjor would have been a major blowback to character. It's an unfortunate habit of Japanese fantasy, sci-fi and superhero productions to cast idols, models and so on in the leading role trying to chace in on their popularity. Unfortunately these people are rarely good actors and this often result in good stories having a mediocre performance.

(formerly Anon, still Librarian)

"What is the point of having free will if one cannot occasionally spit in the eye of destiny?" ("Gentleman" John Marcone)

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 Apr 2017 05:00 #53596 by TwiceOnThursdays
TwiceOnThursdays replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell

brantley wrote: So it's just white people here complaining about "whitewashing."

--Brantley


I don't think so. I have a few Hollywood/Geek POC in my twitter feed. I'd say that most of what I heard about people complaining about it were Asian American of some sort. I ignored white people, including me, complaining about it. And in the end, I honestly don't care -- I cared more about getting the core of the movie right.

But the #'s said that people didn't really pay attention to the whitewashing topic on twitter, nor did it result in an out-of balance of Asian Americans avoiding the movie. (Instead, everyone stayed away equally.)

Here's some refs so you know the things I'm talking about (reviews/comments by non-white people).

thenerdsofcolor.org/2017/03/10/ghost-in-the-shell-worse/
arstechnica.com/the-multiverse/2017/04/h...-and-why-it-matters/

Both do spend a lot more time on how the movie sucked and failed than on the whitewashing -- but it is where I heard most of it from. Pretty sure Lexi Alexander mentioned it a few times.

I should be clear: I don't mind they cast Scarlet. She's a great actress. I mind that they seemed to think they could cast a hot actress, do some kick-ass visuals and that's all this movie needed. That's hardly endemic to this movie though.

EVERY movie has to be adapted. And once you do that, you find the best visuals and actors to tell the story. I think the mistakes were made early in the process (pre-casting). (I.e. take the directors comments from the Ars review and he doesn't seem to get it.)

It's also a shame that they didn't use her casting to really address some of the concepts of identity that are present in the Manga/Anime. It actually primes the pump with some things to delve into. Sure they mention it, but they don't seem to USE it.

I did really like the Japanese movie goers reaction of "they'd just have cast some pop star" so that's one of the reasons Scarlet didn't bother him. That and acknowledging that if it were made in Japan, they'd not have spent enough $$ to get the effects to look as kick ass as they did. This was probably a movie that didn't ever have a good chance to get made correctly (but I felt the same about Lord of The Rings).

I'm going to have to see this at some point, I'm hoping with its dismal box office it'll wash up on Netflix pretty soon and I can make my own judgment

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
17 Apr 2017 10:55 #53674 by Markiehoe
Markiehoe replied the topic: Ghost in the Shell
In it's third week Ghost in the Shell has fallen out of the Top Ten in the U.S.
www.boxofficemojo.com/weekend/chart/

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Markiehoe
  • Markiehoe's Avatar Topic Author
  • Offline
  • Uberposter of Distinction
  • Uberposter of Distinction
More
Time to create page: 0.065 seconds