Alita: Battle Angel Review

Alita: Battle Angel Synopsis

Alita Battle Angel is the film adaptation of the Japanese cyber-punk manga Gunnm. The film’s writing and development are from James Cameron with Robert Rodriguez directing. Set in the distant future of Iron City, it tells the story of a cyborg who awakens with no memory of her past. Alita tries to figure out who she is and where she comes from.

Alita: Battle Angel – What I Liked

This film is gorgeous. You can tell that this movie is the love child of James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez. Both directors are known for their visual effect heavy movies. Cameron in most recent years has brought us Avatar and is currently working on four more sequels. Rodriguez gave us the visually stunning Sin City. This might be the best-looking film that Rodriguez has made since Sin City. From the set pieces to the character looks, there is no detail that they didn’t go over. In this future, humans have advanced technology to allow body replacement with machine parts. The effects make this so life-like, you would think it was all real. This film is also available in 3D. I had the privilege of seeing it this way. The 3D was used in a great way to make the movie just that much more immersive.

These two bring on a strong cast as well. Rosa Salazar stars as Alita. Even though her character was visually replaced by a CGI character, she gave all her full emotion to this role. She stands out in a world of a great supporting cast. Rosa is joined by Oscar nominee Jackie Earl Haley and Oscar winners Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, & Christoph Waltz. To add to this, the film is sprinkled with a plethora of other supporting faces you might recognize. If there is any fault to find with any of these actors, it is not because of their talent.

Alita: Battle Angel – What I Didn’t Like

The story does need some work. As I stated before, this was written by James Cameron. He does go a little into Titanic mode with this one. Now, I never read the comic before. This is my first and only introduction to this story. The story just seemed a little bit of Jack and Rose. There were just parts of this script that just seem very clunky and for something that was years in development, it felt kind of rushed. There are bits of time that seem to make it drag. They probably could have trimmed a little fat off this movie and brought it under two hours.

Keean Johnson who seems to have some success on television plays Hugo, the love interest of Alita. He is probably the weakest link in the entire cast. This film just seems to be bigger than him. His performance is just not that memorable. It is certainly possible that he is the casualty of the script but he just doesn’t have that same punch as Rosa Salazar.

Alita: Battle Angel – What Could Have Been Improved

From an overall standpoint, there is not a whole lot that needs to be improved in this film. The visuals are breathtaking. The world that Cameron and Rodriguez created is detailed and very well thought out. I still go back to the script. This is where I think the film lacks the most. If the script would have the same work put into it that the visuals did, we would have had another Avatar on our hands and will be clamoring for sequels to complete the story. Right now, we just hope that this movie breaks even at the box office.

Alita: Battle Angel – Final Thoughts

Overall, I would recommend this movie who loves a good CGI heavy and beautiful escape from reality. Go see this movie in 3D if you get the chance. The cast is very strong, and all the lesser supporting characters are almost all able to keep up. You can tell this is a Rodriguez movie with the sprinkle of cameos throughout.

Overall Score 3.5/5

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About the Author
Brian is one of the co-founders of Back Lot 605. Movies have always been a passion of his. Some of his closest friends call him a walking movie database. He grew up watching classics like Back to the Future, Ghostbusters, and Star Wars. He has a soft spot for good classics like The Sting, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Sound of Music, & The Wizard of Oz. Brian enjoys a good comic book movie any day and loves The Marvel Cinematic Universe. He has a nerd crush on Kevin Smith, Quentin Tarantino, & Robert Rodriguez. He has been married for ten years and has two handsome twin sons.
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