Updated: Jun 5, 2021
What can I say about Alita? Let's say this is the kind that's visually impressive while it also aims to portray what a live-action anime should look like. Helmed by Robert Rodriguez, known for creating his own low-budget and independent films whether it's aimed at adults (like Sin City), or kids (like the Spy Kids series); but along with producer James Cameron, who's known to bring a bigger budget to movies, it becomes the collaboration I didn't realize I needed.
Based on the best-selling manga, Alita is a cyborg found by Dr. Ido (Christoph Waltz) and is discovered to have a human brain, as she awakens to feel more like a regular teenage girl. It's only when she relives her past memories that trigger a robotic martial art that she learns who she is. While I haven't read any of the manga, I've heard they combined several stories into one but it brings together an open world that's so detailed with what's practical and CGI, you wanna be immersed in it. A sci-fi adventure story but also a coming-of-age story, where as Alita finds romance with a human named Hugo, which may lead to its more corny moments. Like, say when they kiss as the rain falls for one scene and I thought, "huh, where have we seen that before?"
While a few characters may be left in the sidelines such as the main villain, in the end with themes calling back to James Cameron's trademarks, this became a surprising and first must-see of the year. B+