Alita: Battle Angel ★★★

I actually was kind of surprised by how much I liked this--I don't know, maybe there's something to Rodriguez's weird pacing issues when shooting film where the more condensed his source material has to be, the better? The pacing here was.............genuinely weird, more so because it ends setting up a sequel, but it feels weirdly satisfying as a journey for Alita, as a person who represents possibility simply by existing. The CGI and fight scenes where a genuine pleasure to watch, on the right side of uncanny valley, and the cast did an excellent job in what must have been somewhat-tricky filming environments to hit the right pulpy tone (Mahershala Ali gave what were probably my favorite line readings, but Rosa Salazar did a really good job--and I didn't realize Jackie Earl Haley was in this until I checked the credits!)

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