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Reel Review features engaging conversations about film and television with interesting folks and USC experts from across disciplines (public policy, governance, theatre, and cinema) to look at visual storytelling, media literacy, diversity, and the public good.

Hosted by Erroll Southers, Reel Review reminds us that film and TV are powerful and passionate mediums that not only entertain, but reflect and comment on our society. Culture, policy, and politics affect our everyday lives, ideas about how we live, and how we live together. It also influences what we watch, as well as what we take away from those programs.

We want to be smarter about the images and stories we see, and how we can be better together.

Apr 8, 2017

This film has sparked controversy on its casting choices, with many critics claiming another instance of Hollywood whitewashing due to film’s Japanese manga. We discuss the nature of remakes, the whitewashing controversy, whether the film adds to the Ghost world, and Scarlett Johansson.

The futuristic sci-fi film Ghost in the Shell is directed by Rupert Sanders and based on the acclaimed Japanese Manga of the same name, written and illustrated by Masamune Shirow. It takes place in a futuristic alternate reality and follows a cyber-enhanced super soldier as she searches for a hacker as part of an anti-terrorism squad. The film stars Scarlett Johansson as Major, the first of her kind, human brain (ghost) encapsulated in an entirely cybernetic / synthetic body (shell).

In a world where terrorism has reached new levels, the film offers an interesting view of a potential evolutionary path for humans – where the lines between technology and biology are blurred almost beyond recognition, with the very question of what makes someone human at stake.

Is Ghost in the Shell the perfect conversation starter for the cultural moment?

Warning: *spoilers!*

Featuring Alessandro AgoMeiling Cheng, Jonathan Schwartz, Aubrey Hicks, and Erroll Southers

Special thanks to Dean Jack Knott, USC Price; Dean David Bridel, USC School of Dramatic Arts; and Dean Elizabeth Daley, USC Cinematic Arts for their support of this interdisciplinary conversation.

The Price Projection Room (PPR) features engaging conversations about film and television with interesting folks and USC experts from across disciplines (public policy, governance, theatre, and cinema) to look at visual storytelling, media literacy, diversity, and the public good. 

Sponsored by:

USC Price Video Services
http://www.usc.edu/pvs

USC Bedrosian Center
http://bedrosian.usc.edu 

Content Partners:

USC School of Dramatic Arts
https://dramaticarts.usc.edu/ 

USC School of Cinematic-Arts
https://cinema.usc.edu 

Recorded at the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy
http://priceschool.usc.edu