Tonight the gleeful child in me celebrates the movie I never thought would happen! Roxy and I went to see Alita Battle Angel in 3D-Imax as a special early screening!
I’ll straight up admit that I’m an old school fan of the warrior woman we call Gally or Alita depending on where you joined the fandom of this strong character. When I was younger I discovered the wonderful comic at the time successfully being put out by Viz Comics (a side project of the big time anime distributor Viz Videos). Battle Angel was an amazing story combining cyberpunk visuals and anime in a way that was mind-bending and addicting and quite unlike comics being released by American studios at the time.
Then rumors started up that James Cameron, known mainly for Aliens and Terminator at the time, had bought the rights to the story. That chubby-otaku-nerd in me rejoiced….until I learned that it stemmed from James Cameron’s intent to release a TV-series called, Dark Angel, which would be about a young warrior woman crafted by a corporation to be a weapon. The themes are similar, but he didn’t want any legal issues.
So, it was expected that Battle Angel would never be made…. Yet, somehow, some way this movie came into being. James Cameron claims in recent interviews it was Guillermo Del Toro who introduced him to the comic and it was only after Avatar that he knew it could be done.
So what did I think of the film, as an old school fan? It was everything I hoped it would be and more. Did it follow the story of the comic? In a way….but lets start at the beginning.
Alita Battle Angel is visually stunning and details are in place that will thrill the old school fans—important moments from being found to becoming a Hunter are all preserved perfectly. Major characters are well acted and breathed a life into them that will really make the comic fan treasure them. From the blood smears on here cheeks to the interactions with Hugo; you’ll feel it all.
That said, will a knowledge of the comic or even the anime be necessary to enjoy this film? Straight up, no.
While characters and plot points are preserved—this movie takes the story as we know it and rearranges the events to make things flow organically together. Important events of the comics and even the anime run concurrently making a much richer story altogether. It’s no wonder this movie got such big nods from the original creator.
This is an origin story and the struggle to follow all wrapped up in a film that everyone will find thrilling.
Don’t. Miss. This. Film.