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DISCOMUNICATION
09-17-2004, 09:09 PM
I accidently posted this in the VT Community. It makes more sence to be located here. Can some one tell how to delete it from the VT Community section?

Before I get into the actual film....
Okay so why should anyone on this forum who's not an anime fan care about this film. Well this is the only film I've seen that has the Newtek logo in the credits And surprisingly this is the only 3D company that is credited. Yes the Discreet logo is also up there but common sense dictates that the when you see Discreet in film it's almost always for compositing and (almost) never for 3DS Max. Adobe and D-Storm (go to company in Japan for Newtek products) where the only other recognizable companies I remember. Surprisingly no mention of Softimage even though this is the lead story over on www.xsibase.com . Did I missed the Avid logo? I'll make my next post about the actual film.

DISCOMUNICATION
09-17-2004, 09:10 PM
Here is my 2 cents

I just got back from seeing Innocence, Ghost in the Shell 2 for the uninformed. I have one thing to sayÖ. DVD SUCKS! I had already seen the DVD and thought I knew what to expect, but I was so wrong. Film still kicks @$$! Iíve been doing this a lot lately with foreign films, importing the DVD before the American release. Usually when I see a film in the theater after seeing it on DVD I am under whelmed. I have even in some cases skipped seeing it in the theater altogether. Iíve seen a lot of American distributors screw up foreign films, Miramax and Empire Films to name a few. This is not the case with GoFish Films. They did it perfectly. They didnít change anything except the credits. I think I was the only person in the theater that was surprised when the title came into focus with that ďGhost in the Shell 2Ē stacked perfectly on top of ďInnocenceĒ.
The picture was just so massive. And everything was on such a grand scale that it could only truly be appreciated on the big screen. There was a lot more detail in the dark and light areas. I never noticed the veins in the feet during the skin grafting sequence in the opening. And the audio is simply exquisite. So many Hollywood movies do so little digital surround sound. My hat is off to Skywalker Ranch. When Batouís houndís tail wags from one side of the screen to anotherÖ..Maybe I should actually comment on the content of the film itself.
Yes the plot is relatively simple, but it is told in a complex way. A lot of people have complained about the way characters communicate through quotation, but I did not find it to distracting. I thought the dialog was going to be all quotes the way people were complaining. In reality this material makes up less than a tenth of the total dialog. Some of the characters in my favorite novels communicate in this manner. I donít think this would be such a big issue if you could hear the characters in your native language. Itís actually the tech talk and yakuza angle that is most needlessly confusing.
As for the visuals? It may sound like Iím in love with every aspect of this movie, but Iím really not. Yes this film is gorgeous, but sometimes it does feel like the animators are showing off. I like films were impressive visuals are just kind of thrown away in the background. Here they are front and center yelling, ďLook at me! Look what I can do!Ē
I liked the little things they donít call attention to like how much a car sinks or rises when Batou gets in or out of it. (Heís one heavy cyborg)
And the underlying theme of the film? Some reviewers say itís the same as the first. I think itís a slightly different perspective. The first film asked, ďWho am I?Ē (As an individual) The second film asks ďWho are we?Ē (As a race) If there where a third film I would hope it would attempt to answer those (thatís an ambitious, arrogant, and kind of impossible taskÖ forget I brought it up). While some things were kind of bloated and heavy handed like the majorís ďreturnĒ. I do like the fact she didnít come back in a recognizable form. My favorite scene was probably the last one. The way the final 2 cuts summed up the entire film was probably the most perfect ending Iíve ever seen in a movie. Ryuhei Kitamura says holding a frame like that for a long time is a very Japanese aesthetic, but I donít think Iíve seen much of this outside of Oshii films.
In the end this isnít my favorite film of the year, but this is the best experience Iíve had in a movie theater in years

riki
09-18-2004, 12:16 AM
Great to see Lightwave being used on this. I hope it's a trand that picks up and continues. So what does the Major come back as?? a little girl??

NigelH
09-19-2004, 12:01 AM
So what does the Major come back as?? a little girl??

Yes and no. ;)

jin choung
09-19-2004, 12:43 AM
just saw it!

mamosh is a man that likes his blade runner. for him, it's like he was hit by the blade runner truck and never fully recovered - and i say that not as a put down... just a really apt description of his work. and while GITS was like a sequel to, GITS2 almost feels like a remake.

there were times when i could predict the movement of a camera or vehicle or the soundtrack because i had seen blade runner!

he also takes all the flaws of blade runner (opaque characters, stopping the story dead to shoot the [email protected]# about philosophy and techno mumbo jumbo) and magnifies 20x!!! there were times when i just burst out laughing because the story had just stopped stone cold dead for the last ten minutes and they're talking about milton!

but the thing in the middle with that repeating dealy was awesome... really threw me for a loop (literally)

in terms of sensory candy-

unbelievable how DENSE the imagery and sonic environment was... i don't know if it came across universally or if it was just the theater that i saw it in (arclight in hollywood) but my gosh, the sound and the music (especially the drums) were awesome.

studio ig is is really ballsy about the way it mixes 2d and cg as well... in terms of the marriage of the two, sometimes it felt like an odd couple and it wasn't a perfect blend, it did look like 2d on 3d.... but each was so well done that you didn't really end up caring. and unlike american attempts like disney, i don't think they really care that the cg is not 'invisible'.... as long as it looks cool.

actually, that's a trait of most japanese animation... they simply don't pay attention to things they don't care about! if it's two people talking, they just stop animating.... but when they get a fight scene with lots of explosions and such, you've never seen so many frames 'on 1s'!

the designs were fantastic. and so much of the imagery is just hypnotic... probably doesn't contribute much to the story and could not possibly be justified in terms of how long some of these 'dreams' lasted on screen but it makes for the perfect 'trip out' film. the carnival in particular was just mind blowing.

so many times i just had to gape at how long it must've taken to render!

anyway, great experience... not a great movie... but certainly not to be missed on the big screen if you have a choice about it.

jin

maxsoul
09-20-2004, 12:39 PM
slightly off topic but take a look at this link
http://www.a-seed.jp/graphics/mechanics/index.html
Another animation made with LW.

archiea
09-21-2004, 12:14 AM
well.. I thought that while the film may have taken a bit of a self indulgance with mood and setting, I find it hard to see it as a fault considering todays offerings in the genre...

One can't help but compare this to iRobot as well as bladerunner. Consider the safe route that iRobot took with its storytelling. Action driven film while Innocence was more mood driven with actio in it. iRobot used violence as in hand to hand robot fighting or Will \Smith diving in slow motion with guns blazing, a less offensive and complex overtone in film than the sexual and suicidal overtones used in Innocence.

iRobot needed to have the sexual tension between Will Smith and the, of course, hot scientist (the last time I saw a scientsit that hot wass... well... in the movies) as just a standard issue element right there. Innocence used the admittedly familiar notion that the robots are more emotional than the humans who created them . Yes iRobot can be said that it was based upon that notion as well, depicting the disposed robots as just not discarded technology. However its... just....so ....simplified.... so lowest common denominator...

At least innocece had the balls to tell a story in a more complex, not so in your face kind of way. Again, the boldness, if not the clarity of logic, that Robots will be used for pleasure in the furture (heck, reeldolls.com ain;t that far away). In a way this dehumanizes us. Then in the race for a better "product", companies try to make their product as real as possible. this ties into the central; theme in Ghost in the Shell as to what is consciousness? what is Life? It just happens to depict it using an often thought taboo subject as sex... where the level of intimacy pursued by these products cause them to "malfuyntion" when they are "rejected" or as we would call sold on eBay for the new model.

So Innocence takes an reality in our daily lives and explores it in its own themes... i.e. how many digital cameras have any of us gone through? or Phones? it would be natural to assume that in the future that the new commodity would be robots. What would happen if those robots were so advanced, so real, that there existed a form of concsiousness.

I just think that the film stands on its own as not trying to cater to what some studio giant wanted or to meet market expectations. its an artist's piece in and of itself. I jsut think that its such a rarity that people just don;t know how to react to it as it wasn't engineered TO get an immediate reaction...

jin choung
09-21-2004, 01:43 AM
hey archiea,

i don't necessarily disagree but in the final verdict, do you disagree that the film has flaws?

as for the themes of the human machine and the mysteries of consciousness blah blah blah... they are as old as descart and most probably older.... and as a result of billy gibson, blade runner and to a lesser extent, phillip k. dick (who in the most bizarre thing ever, made it fashionable for sci fi fans of all ages to dwell upon what a person with debilitating dissociative disorders must think about) have made such topics REALLY old hat for the cyberpunk genre.... think about it, you can hardly have a cyberpunk story these days without it invariably ending up being about the nature of reality and though it is not an ESSENTIAL relationship, it nevertheless FEELS ESSENTIAL in this post dick world.

it's only really fresh if you missed the last fifty or so years of sci fi fiction and the last thirty years or so of sci fi cinema and anime... dontcha think?

as for irobot, i kinda think of it as MATRIX 0.

jin

archiea
09-22-2004, 02:00 AM
hey archiea,

i don't necessarily disagree but in the final verdict, do you disagree that the film has flaws?

as for the themes of the human machine and the mysteries of consciousness blah blah blah... they are as old as descart and most probably older.... and as a result of billy gibson, blade runner and to a lesser extent, phillip k. dick (who in the most bizarre thing ever, made it fashionable for sci fi fans of all ages to dwell upon what a person with debilitating dissociative disorders must think about) have made such topics REALLY old hat for the cyberpunk genre.... think about it, you can hardly have a cyberpunk story these days without it invariably ending up being about the nature of reality and though it is not an ESSENTIAL relationship, it nevertheless FEELS ESSENTIAL in this post dick world.

it's only really fresh if you missed the last fifty or so years of sci fi fiction and the last thirty years or so of sci fi cinema and anime... dontcha think?

as for irobot, i kinda think of it as MATRIX 0.

jin

I'm not crediting innocence with originating the concept.. just in utilizing in a more modern, adult fashion, even for anime, but especially for pop SciFi.

As far as flaws, I know to many people who can't even enjoy films anymore because all they see are flaws. Often they are frustrated wanna-be writers who are waiting to be discovered. Until their script and dreams are made, everying is crap.

Once could say Stanley Kubrik films are flawed. Some call it genious. I call it a kubrik movie, as I call M. Night Shalalalalalllalaman-whatever a M. Night whalalawhatever movie.... its their artistic vision primarily tht we are seeing. I like Sixth sense, like the premise of Unbreakable, didn't care for Signs, loved the characterizations acting and cinematography of The Village.

The funniest is when a paper like the New York Times reviews popcorn fodder like Predator VS Aliens and decides overplay its weaknesses with high brow references to its flaws.. maybe he didn't read the title... heck I go to see films like "the Brain that wouldn't Die' just to goof on its "Flaws"

its just my preference to wanting to be challenged and see something uniqe that makes me feel more entertained when watching Innocence rather than iRobot. At least innocence has the balls to be quirky. Patlabor2, Ghost in the Shell, Angel, BladeRunner. Legend, even Akira are all "flawed" if you pick them apart. Or, you can accept that some films tell a story differently... sometimes its just a journey without a destination or solution. The guy doesn't get the girl at the end... or maybe there never is a girl... heck thats refreshing...

I remember seeing Moholland Drive and just getting it in the first viewing.... It just clicked with me... while alot of folks just dismisssed it as another lynch trip.

I recall at the end of Spirited Away, someone next to me said "what was that about". There was no villan, no explicit purpose clearly define... shots held on scenes for apparently no reason. So to this guy, he never got what it was about....

For me, I like these kind of stories as they are unconventional... they task the audience to participate in the journey; to allow themselves to be taken on a trip, where often you DON'T know more than the protagonist does... maybe even less... Its hard for people to enjoy these films because they were looking for a more passive experience, one where the familiar cues or clear three act structure holds their hands throughout the film, lest they get lost and say the film sucks or that its flawed...

Getting back to your comment, your attitiude (this is not an attack) even as you describe the subgenre of cyborg/human/A.I. philosophy as blah, blah,blah is akin to how I describe soap operas, modern Sitcoms and primetime CSI crap as blah blah vblah... it doesn;t interest me. maybe its exhuasted your interest.

i welcome interpretation of that subgenre, as well as enjoying films that relate to the deterioration of one's mind/psyche ala "Jason's Ladder", Moholland Drive, Sixth Sense, the Others, Blade Runner, what dreams may come, Thin Red Line etc... not because of the supposed surprise ending in some of them, but because of the journey that the character took there, and the filmmaker's ability to interpret it..

But thats just me....

Edbittner
09-23-2004, 04:06 AM
Hey guys,
As most of you are saying-not saying, the story sometimes is in the telling. I for one can't wait to experience this film. I guess I was hit by the BR truck as well, but that's not a bad thing. IMHO, the film of the Philip K. Dick novel is much better than the source material. How often can one say that? Is "GitS2" a bit lofty, or slow at times? Probably, but often it's those quiet moments in a film that say more about characters than dialog.
E.

jin choung
09-25-2004, 03:07 AM
i thought 'the firm' the movie was a lot better than the book. and the porno version was even better than that - now THAT'S what i call a plot twist! whew....

anyhoo

:)

trust me, the imagery and narrative pauses - while stunning - reveal absolutely nothing of any relevance to anything resembling anything.... well, they do sometimes beat a motif into the ground, kill it and then rape its remains (yeah yeah, dolls, people, people, dolls... i got it already) but not much of any narrative substance.

but then again, much of 2001ASO was like that as well. and like 2001, i think this would be a fantastic film for the illicit drug afficionados in the audience.

all my critique may make it sound like i disliked the movie but i didn't... it was really really cool. but i would say extremely flawed as well... which is the case with most anime.

and which was the case for BR - which i like to think of as the first movie ever to deal completely with non humans.... heck, even anthropomorphized fish are still anthropomorphized.... in br, everyone acted and responded as if they were hit by a tranq dart.

BR is one of my favorites and probably one of the most INFLUENTIAL movies in cinema history... but i would definitely consider it a flawed work and would say that it doesn't really work as a narrative film.

DADOES? is just really different - more an inspiration than a source of adaptation.

a shame about paycheck too.... the story had a very simple but tight internal logic that john woo just gutted for the sake of slomo doves.... i'd really love to see jw do a space pic... want to see a fing white dove in the vacuum of space - see how it likes that... oh yeah.

total recall is still my fav adaptation so far. minority report just didn't make any sense.... screamers would have made a really cool short film... a shame about the movie though.

anyone see that one with dnofrio and madeleine stowe and whatshis face? came out christmas day i believe but was just lambasted in the reviews...

i missing any dick movies?

wonder if flow my tears will be any good. odd that it will be directed by the man who brought us 'before sunrise/sunset'.

jin

Rory_L
09-27-2004, 12:10 AM
I saw it god knows when, about nine months ago or more and it`s still fresh in my mind. You guys seem all to have watched it as the Ghost sequel and in English, of course. I had no preconceptions going into the theatre, being blissfully unaware it was part of any continuum till after I`d watched it. Furthermore, my Japanese is OK for daily conversations, but doesn`t allow me tp pick up all the detail of movie dialogue, which by the sound of your postings was just as well :) . I came out of the cinema floating on cloud nine, thinking it had been the best anime I`d ever seen. Then I raced into the Virgin store and got the soundtrack, which I even now tend to play on loop while I`m at home LWaving. Bloomin` fantastic!

Loved the street parade scene!

Don`t know when it`ll reach the West, but you should all keep an eye out for Steam Boy, which again was terrific and made with Lightwave, if I`m not mistaken.

Cheers,

R

DISCOMUNICATION
11-17-2004, 11:30 AM
http://www4.discreet.com/3dsmax/3dsmax.php?id=990&lid=ghost&lpos=fourth#

Funny, I thought this scene in particular felt the most like a LightWave demo reel. I still don't know which programs where used for each individual scene and I own the Japanese R-2 DVD! It has a disapointing making of feature that has more interviews than actual video footage of the artists at work. The making of feature on the first film was better than this one. Has anyone else seen articals like the discreet* one that actually show which scenes were used for a particular program?

I've been wrong so far, but I'm going to guess that the Parade scene and Kim's house toward the end were done in XSI and LightWave might have mainly been used for modeling and very few animation scenes.... But.... I just remembered Maya and Houdini were ued too.... were do they fit in?

Anyone notice that some of the 2D character animations kind of have a 3D feel to them in terms of motion. I only noticed this on very short or wide shots where the characters are very small.

DISCOMUNICATION
11-17-2004, 02:28 PM
I wondered why the "Making of" feature was so disappointing on my DVD. In order to get the good version: http://www.kyo-kan.net/archives/2004/10/_dvdbox_dvd.html
you apparently have to buy the $600 edition: http://www.kyo-kan.net/archives/2004/10/_dvdbox.html

Rory_L
11-17-2004, 09:25 PM
Interviews here:-

http://www.cgchannel.com/news/viewfeature.jsp?newsid=3512

It seems that the street parade was largely 2D animated!

R