Alita: Battle Angel is James Cameron’s latest production project, with directorial reigns handed off to Robert Rodriguez as Cameron devoted his time to the Avatar franchise.
As expected with any Cameron cinematic enterprise, Alita incorporates the absolute pinnacle of cutting-edge technology and visual effects, breathing life into Yukito Kishiro’s futuristic manga stories originally written in the 1990s. I am not personally a fan of 3D films most of the time, but this is one of those that almost requires a 3D, IMAX experience in order to get the most impact. The action sequences contained within Alita are some of the most immersive, thrilling, electrifying scenes I have witnessed in any film throughout my entire life, with much credit deserved by Director of Photography, Bill Pope, and the special effects experts from Weta Digital.
Additionally, the sound design provides even further support to the riveting, mesmerizing event that is Alita. Tom Holkenborg (Junkie XL) once again brings his musical genius talents to the table with an adrenaline-pumping score that will have your heart pounding through your chest.
The production design crew, headed by Caylah Eddleblute and Steve Joyner, reels off a gorgeous depiction of 26th century life, highlighting the stark contrast between a post-apocalyptic world and the advanced technology of the future.
Stars including Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Mahershala Ali, Jennifer Connelly, and Ed Skrein, among others, bring solid performances in their portrayal of compelling characters with adequate depth and development.
Still, the screenwriting flaws must be touched upon. The dialogue felt cheesy and predictable on some occasions, with the plot falling prey to these clichés as well. Perhaps one conflict too many overcrowded the storyline, when more focus should have been placed on the main arc. These issues were enough to bring its overall rating down a few levels, but the strengths of Alita are far too great to be overlooked.
Alita: Battle Angel: In theaters everywhere February 14th. WATCH THIS IN IMAX.