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Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this movie is intended for older adolescents and adults. It's slightly tamer than its predecessor. Nudity and strong language are brief. The violence is stylized. There is a lot of shooting and some blood. Disturbing imagery blurs the lines between humans and robots, such as a lifelike robot opening its chest to reveal wires. The overall subject matter has a tendency to be heady and philosophical.
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What's the story?
GHOST IN THE SHELL 2: INNOCENCE begins three years after the original, with the disappearance of undercover cop, Major Kusanagi. The story centers on Kusanagi's new, more human partner, the mountainous cyborg Batou, and their investigation into the serial killings of "gynoids," robots (the future's answer to geishas). Like Kusanagi before him, Batou delves into dilemmas about the meaning of humanity in relation to cybernetics and his "ghost," or soul.
Is it any good?
Anime has come a long way since the first Ghost in the Shell (1995); the movie's gorgeous mix of traditional and 3-D animation makes for dynamic spectacle. Where the first Ghost had static dialogue scenes, Innocence has diverting visuals. Unfortunately, this sequel adds little new content. The plot is as convoluted as first movie's, and for all the metaphysics and philosophy involved, the story is not much different. Fans expecting a big payoff after a decade of waiting might be left wanting more.