DARKMATTERS - The Mind of Matt

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Monday, February 11, 2019

There must be a 'Battle' Angel playing with my heart...

Alita: Battle Angel (12a)

Dir. Robert Rodriguez

Reviewed by Matt (@Cleric20) Adcock

“I'd do whatever I had to for you. I'd give you whatever I have. I'd give you my heart.”

The future isn’t going to be great, unless you are rich and can live in the utopia of Tiphares, a floating city of dreams that is. Most of the populace alas have to exist in the brutal reality of the Iron City where crime is rampant despite bounty hunters enforcing violent retribution on wrongdoers.

Director Rodriguez’s stunning big-screen take on Alita: Battle Angel is based on the Yukito Kishiro manga ‘Gunnm’. It tells the tale of a young cyborg, Alita (Rosa Salazar), who is found by a cybernetics boffin, Dr. Ido (Christoph Waltz), in the junkyard beneath Tiphares.

"ready for battle"

Alita doesn’t remember who or what she is, but it soon becomes apparent that she might be a lethal battle machine and the biggest threat to the ruling elite possible. Is she an angel from heaven or is she a robotically enhanced angel of death?

James Cameron who wrote the screenplay is a huge fan of the original comic books and it shows because there is a powerful fanboy vibe running through this eye-popping cinematic interpretation. This film could have been all style over substance but this has a real beating heart and more soul than you’d expect from a tale of cyborgs.

"careful who you trust"

The visual effects and CGI work are incredible, Alita herself is an immediate action icon in the making due to her innocent look (her eyes are enlarged to capture the original Manga drawings’ art style). The whole look and feel of the movie is meticulously created – the living, breathing sprawling metropolis is packed with details that will bear repeat viewings.

The plot is action-packed and the fights are crunching – as you might expect from the director of Sin City – but it’s not too gory so would be a great choice for those younger teens who can handle some threat. There is, of course, a love interest – teen human Hugo (Keean Johnson) - who has a dark side where his gang attack cyborgs and harvest their body parts for resale. Might Alita be the cyborg to change his ways?

Quality support is provided by the baddies Jennifer Connelly and Mahershala Ali who add class to compliment Waltz’s quality fatherly figure. Alita: Battle Angel could have been just another dystopian action-em-up but rather it delivers on every level and even sets up a tantalising potential sequel.

Out of a potential 5 - you have to go with a Darkmatters:


(3.5 - Quality Manga Adaptation that kicks cyborg ass)

Awesomeness öööö – The action is where it takes off...

Laughs ööö – Good humour modules interfaced nicely

Horror öö – Some violence and threat

Spiritual Enlightenment ööö - Will cyborgs ever acknowledge a 'God'?

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