Alita: Battle Angel hits the epic fights of manga, but it’s still not the Hollywood redemption with the genre.
After so many weak adaptations of manga and anime, Alita: Battle Angel delivers a fresh breath.
However, perhaps this is not yet Hollywood’s redemption with the genre. By developing virtually every subplot of the manga, not even the flawless look of the movie masks the weariness of such an episodic story.
With the proposal to be the first chapter of an eventual franchise, the film establishes solid foundations for its protagonist.
In a hostile setting, with hunter-warriors and piece thieves in every alley in the City of Scrap, Alita is presented in a dump, discarded among so many rusted pieces.
By the hands of Ido, a kind doctor who adopts her, she returns to life with no memory of what led her there.
Over two hours, the production merges the arches of the manga and the anime, accompanying the maturing of the cyborg and the rediscovery of the reason for its existence.
Alita’s innocence and bravery do not take long to conquer the viewer.
In this process of self-knowledge, actress Rosa Salazar captured the spirit of the character very well. More than just a representation of the female force, she is charismatic, cute and open to the world around her.
It is true that there are more spectacular moments, especially in the teenage romance, that makes the eye as much as in the original work. However, this is due to the false urgency of Rodriguez’s script, James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis, not for the actress or the direction of the scenes.
In the background, it is the Salazar performance that recovers to some extent the breath of the narrative and the interest of the public. If she did not have this understanding of Alita, the plot would not have so much acceptance.
Not precisely the trajectory of the protagonist, which follows a rather classic structure, but because the film uses too many characters as a springboard to build this evolution.
Alita: Battle Angel is incapable of developing more than two names of the central core, wasting the talent of a good part of its cast in arcs sometimes not very relevant during the main journey.
Jennifer Connelly’s character is a clear example of this. Doctor Chiren has no role in history until the last second, when her presence is justified in a moment of forced maternal instinct, unlike anything she has been shown hitherto.
The villain of Mahershala Ali also falls on a similar issue. Although it is identical to the Vector of the manga, it does not have the same presence of the original work.
They increased their space in the film, but they took their full weight in the narrative by using it as a pretext for ultimate revelation.
Actor Keenan Johnson, on the other hand, had every chance to deliver a good performance and not convinced as the bad boy Hugo.
It ends up embodying the most annoying thing in production. Losing time to work on a teenage romance until a bit stereotyped, Alita: Battle Angel puts in the background what is very good: the action scenes.
Epic scrapes and acrobatics are plausible within the narrative and, along with the beautiful visual work of the film, create an exciting, immersive experience in filmmaking.
The intention to continue Alita’s story and build a franchise is apparent. However, while retaining some of these patterns, perhaps few would want to follow a second chapter.