Ghost In The Shell opening scene

Snow White and the Huntsman isn’t the most lively adventure movie – it’s fairly serious and has a certain grit that, tonally, is quite distancing. Director Rupert Sanders seems to be going for a dour tone once again with his second feature, but it may actually suit the live-action take on Ghost in the Shell. Like the trailer featuring yet another sad cover of a terrific song (“Enjoy the Silence”), the first five minutes of the film are a bit on the grim and solemn side.

Watch it below and see if you agree.

Ghost in the Shell, which has been the subject of much controversy, is based on the manga and 1995 anime film of the same name. One of the most popular and versatile movie stars working today, Scarlett Johansson, plays the Major, a human-cyborg who’s the head of a police task force in a futuristic Tokyo. She begins to learn the truth about her past in this sci-fi action film, which co-stars Juliette BinocheMichael Pitt, Pilou Asbaek, and Takeshi Kitano.

Sanders certainly knows how to craft an appealing image. His impressive and often atmospheric commercial work is filled with memorable images. In the first five minutes of Ghost in the Shell, he establishes a serious tone and style for the film rather quickly. He gets plenty of help from composers Lorne Balfe (The LEGO Batman Movie) and Clint Mansell (Moon), whose music provides a bit of propulsion to an opening featuring some story exposition, sleek production design, and some vibrant images, some of which are nods to the anime film.

Here’s the Ghost in the Shell opening scene:

The Major “going in” and breaking through the glass window is a well-done moment. It’s a small environment for a quick action scene, but it’s tightly constructed and stylish (although it feels restrained by the PG-13 rating). The high-angle shot of the Major is the standout moment, followed by Sanders quickly cutting to show the next goon in her way. There’s a crystal clear sense of geography. With Sanders working alongside cinematographer Jess Hall (Hot Fuzz) and production designer Jan Roelfs (Gattaca), Ghost in the Shell probably has plenty of eye-candy to offer. Hopefully, it has more going for it than a good sense of style. We’ll see soon enough if there is some actual life and personality to the world they’ve constructed.

Here’s the official synopsis:

Based on the internationally-acclaimed sci-fi property, “GHOST IN THE SHELL” follows the Major, a special ops, one-of-a-kind human-cyborg hybrid, who leads the elite task force Section 9. Devoted to stopping the most dangerous criminals and extremists, Section 9 is faced with an enemy whose singular goal is to wipe out Hanka Robotic¹s advancements in cyber technology.

Ghost in the Shell opens in theaters March 31, 2017.

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