It’s been about a month since my last post because I’ve been extremely busy on the weekends, which is when I usually see a movie. Additionally, there wasn’t much out there that I wanted to see. While in Phoenix last weekend for the Final Four, my good friend from Chapel Hill, N.C., Alan (great psychiatrist and passionate fan of the 2017 College Basketball Champions, the N.C. “Tar-Heels”) and I saw this science fiction film. It is derived from the 1996 animated Japanese film of the same name. It had poor reviews, but the chance to see Scarlett Johansson (performing as Major) looking nearly naked throughout a considerable portion of the film was too much for me to resist. (Scarlett is in my “Beautiful Jewish Women Hall of Fame,” which also includes Rachel Weisz and Natalie Portman). If you enjoyed “The Matrix,” you will probably like this film, too.
The movie takes place in the future, where some people are Cyborgs (part human/part machine). Nevertheless, there are many humans opposed to the increasing influence of technology that the “State” is trying to suppress. A woman is in a horrific accident and would have died, but she was saved by Dr. Ouelet (Juliette Binoche). Her “ghost,” (i.e. brain and soul, if one exists) is transferred into an entirely android body (shell) with many super-human abilities. She cannot recall her prior identity and becomes “Major.” She now works as an agent for “Section 9,” which is tracking down “terrorists” who oppose the State.
This situation, however, is not quite what it appears to be, and the truth about Major and the State gradually unfolds. The special effects are quite good and there are plenty of exciting action sequences. Although short on character development, the film raises some interesting philosophical and moral questions about what makes a human, cyber-surveillance, the police state, and identity. Both Alan and I enjoyed it, and we think it’s a much better film than the reviews would indicate.
I can only see about one movie per week, so if there is anyone out there reading this post who would like to post some reviews on this blog, please leave a comment and I will do my best to contact you. Thank you!