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‘Alita: Battle Angel’, a cyborg movie done right

By Shant A. Voskian - Feb 19,2019 - Last updated at Feb 19,2019

Rosa Salazar in ‘Alita: Battle Angel’ (Photo courtesy of imdb.com)

Every once in a while a great, albeit unusual, group of people come together to create a movie that exceeds expectations. People whom you would never imagine working on the same project yet by some weird twist of fate actually do and create something successful. Today this achievement goes to none other than the recently released box office film “Alita: Battle Angel”.

Based on the Japanese manga comics created by Yukito Kishiro, the film has made itself a dominant feature last Valentine’s Day and over the weekend. “Alita: Battle Angel” director Robert Rodriguez, famed for such action movies as “From Dusk Till Dawn”, “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For” and “Machete”, took charge of a merry band of talented actors and actresses, and brought to life an amazing story literally giving new meaning to the jokingly teasing phrase “Anime eyes”.

I must admit, it was not the very capable director that made me optimistic about seeing this movie, but the very fact that James Cameron worked on this film as a producer and a writer. Cameron is best known for creating great action thrillers such as “Terminator”, “Aliens” and “Avatar”. The man is known to turn anything he touches to gold, the Midas touch of filmmaking if you will. This is why I knew, going in to the movie theatre, that I was about to watch something that is just as great as the rest of his portfolio and I was not wrong. 

The story of “Alita: Battle Angel” takes place after a great war in a distant dystopian future where hope is rare, cyborgs are everywhere and all that matters is your ability to survive the harsh reality. Alita, played by Rosa Salazar (“Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials”, “Maze Runner: The Death Cure”, “Bird Box”), is a cyborg found and revived by Dr Ido, played by Christoph Waltz (“Inglourious Basterds”, “Django Unchained” “Downsizing”), but she has no memory of her past or where she comes from. She finds herself being forced to fight the corrupt and merciless forces that rule society, but the more she fights the more she remembers and discovers who and what she really is.

The performance by the cast was incredible, especially Salazar. There is not a second from the moment she appears on screen that her character does not grab you by the heart strings. You will be emotionally invested from the beginning and feel as though you are going on the journey of discovery with Alita. 

Waltz plays the role of the father figure as if he was meant for it. With other famed supporting cast members such as Jennifer Connelly (“Blood Diamond”, “Inkheart”) and Mahershala Ali (“Green Book”, “Hidden Figures”) it is no surprise that they complement the film perfectly. And if action is what you seek, then look no further, there are plenty of cyborg fight sequences to quench your thirst. 

The effects and animations bring this world of cyborgs to life and well worth the film’s $200 million budget. This movie is the best I have seen this year and has become one of my favourites. A good mixture of science fiction, action and romance, it is a movie fit for everyone. It will not disappoint. Quite the contrary, it leaves you wanting more. 

So if you have not seen it already, if you have some time during the week or during the coming weekend, and you want to watch an amazing film with your friends and family, or even by yourself, then I suggest you go see “Alita: Battle Angel”. You will not be sorry.

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