“Alita: Battle Angel” presents a mixed bag

Robert Rodriguez’s technically exciting film cannot overcome its confusing plot.


Adam Pigott, Staff Writer

Alita: Battle Angel” simultaneously stuns and disappoints. Although it excites with engaging battle sequences, menacing villains and talented actors, its confusing plot and abrupt ending hinder the film from being excellent.


“Alita: Battle Angel” confuses through Rodriguez’s lack of cohesive world creation and story explanation. While the film may be based on the Japanese manga “Gunnm,” it expects the audience to understand the manga’s already established backstory. Many plots are left without further explanation, confusing the viewer as the film progresses. While the plot may not be cohesive, the cast does their best with what they have. Up-and-coming actor Rosa Salazar brings steely charm, and veteran actors Christopher Waltz, Mahershala Ali and Edward Norton anchor the film with commanding screen presences.


While many things about this film are lackluster, the action sequences are enthralling and engaging. Watching the fight scenes between Alita, the “hunter warriors,” and assassins is mind-blowing to say the least, as Rodriguez uses a variety of special effects, slow motion sequences and martial arts to make the film stand out. “The Matrix” defined what it meant to mix those three elements together, and “Alita: Battle Angel” blends them together in its own unique and exciting way.


“Alita: Battle Angel excellently portrays villains with the perfect amount of wickedness. Ed Skrein plays Zarpan, a hunter warrior who is menacing, evil and stone-cold. Meanwhile, Ali portrays Vector, an unpredictable and manipulative villain. Despite this, his character is a puppet, controlled by Norton’s Nova. Norton goes throughout the film without saying a single word, but remains mysterious and sadistic. The film only gives the audience a few glimpses of the villain, while giving them a large look at his amount of power and control.


While abrupt endings can help shock the audiences and force them to think about the film, this film’s abrupt ending only detracts from the film. There are levels when it comes to abrupt endings. “Alita: Battle Angel’s” ending was far too sudden. There are ways to leave the audience hanging with moderate abruption. Although fans never got to see Andrew Garfield’s third Spider-Man film, his second film had the perfect ending. The audience knew that the end was coming soon, they just did not know exactly when it would end. It ends with Spider-Man confronting a new villain and closes before the first punches are thrown. The audience ending for “Alita: Battle Angel,” on the other hand, was random and completely unexpected.

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