Ghost in the Shell 2.0Manga (Blu-ray)
A cybernetic government agent and the Internal Bureau of Investigations are hot on the trail of a threatening computer virus.
When it comes to anime films there are few in the same league as Oshii’s Ghost in the Shell. This is a story that would standup in any form but the level of attention given to this beautiful anime is still stunning all these years later. This new 2.0 version delivers some new animation and a rework of the voice work done for the production; essentially a sprucing up. While this works really well for some sequences, it feels a bit unneeded in others. Thankfully it never takes away from the story. Fans of the original will also find the theatrical cut included as an extra on this disc, but the quality of the presentation isn’t nearly on par with the new version.
This is an older anime film so the quality of the animation detail is a bit behind what we see today. Even so this is still a wonder to watch. The depth of the animation is still incredible. The new touches bring it more up to the level we saw from the sequel, Innocence. The DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack is breathtaking with incredible sound design and range. This is one of the best sounding anime films out there with plenty of demo worthy sequences. An English dub is also included.
The biggest extra is the inclusion of the theatrical cut in 1080i. Unfortunately it looks like an upconvert of an old VHS or Laserdisc encode with obvious artifacts. You also get a look at the making of the new cut along with a feature commentary with the director.
One of the benchmarks of anime films finally sees its release on Blu-ray. I wish the theatrical cut would have been given a better presentation on a second disc but at least they included it in there. This new version does enhance the experience at times and I doubt many will complain. Highly recommended.