The anime classic Ghost in the Shell begins July's month of animated marvels with midnight shows [at The Belcourt] over the July 4 weekend. Mamoru Oshii's 1995 thriller follows the cyborg major of a police assault team assigned to bring down the notorious hacker the Puppet Master. Maj. Motoko Kusanagi has a stunning human form, but she is a manufactured hero, created in a 2029 world where everything — including much of humanity — is connected through a seemingly endless network of electronics and digital information.
There's much Blade Runner-esque philosophizing to be found here, and the film's deeper themes about sexual identity give a glimpse into the kind of post-gender world we may actually be creating in our own pursuit of the virtual. Ghost's visuals resonate with studied realism and were brought to the screen in a unique combination of both cel animation and computer graphics. Keep your eyes peeled for scenes and tropes that were dropped directly into another movie called The Matrix [which screened last weekend as The Belcourt's midnight movie]. …"
Read here for more on The Belcourt's month of animated programming in conjunction with The Frist Center's Watch Me Move exhibit. Above, a clip from last year comparing Ghost in the Shell and The Matrix directly.