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Ghost in the Shell dies at the box office

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Controversial movie met with yawns at release

Jasin Boland/Paramount Pictures

The live-action adaptation of Ghost in the Shell died at the box office this weekend, bringing in $19 million in ticket sales against a budget of $110 million. The film brought in $40 million internationally, although it has yet to open in Japan or China.

Ghost in the Shell suffered from negative buzz every step of the way, from the casting of Scarlett Johansson in the lead role, a character who was Japanese in the original manga and animated versions of the story. Fans used an official meme generator to show their displeasure at the casting.

The Steve Aoki remix of the original theme was also met with derision from fans and those with ears.

But the real issue may have been that the film was just bad, even when you remove the issues of casting and the clumsy marketing.

“Ghost in the Shell, by contrast, is a movie that says absolutely nothing,” our review states. “It’s a generic story told by a generic director in a generic way. The plot, predictable as it is, trundles along only because our heroes repeatedly prove themselves oblivious to obvious traps. A major plot point hinges on a woman opening up to a complete stranger about her dead daughter within 30 seconds of meeting her … because, sure, that’s what people do? The film doesn’t even bother explaining the villain’s motivation.”

We’ll see how the movie does internationally, but we’re going to go out on a limb and guess that a sequel is not on the way.