I had a chance to watch Assault Girls
on Bluray on Friday and it was....unique. One shouldn't expect Oshii live action to be epic by any measure and I wasn't necessarily disappointed by taking this approach. The effects were fairly decent by Japanese movie standards (although decidedly a cut below the few Yamato
clips I've seen to date) but nothing was particularly noteworthy either.
For anyone who's heard a few of his interviews and/or monologues then you'll certainly find the @10m opening monologue the epitome of all that is bad and good about Oshii's obsessive reiteration of the clash between reality and that which is virtual/perceived. Ultimately the movie does little to reinforce this notion as it primarily takes place within the game world.
It's yet another of his self-insertion tales as the familiar downtrodden man surrounded by "untrustworthy" women (an indicator of his home life that he's often alluded to in countless interviews). I also though that it lingered a bit long on slow pans of the mood-building panoramic vistas, which were admittedly quite striking in their bleakness, but the resulting pace will likely get much of the same criticism as the .Hack
franchise received; most viewers understandably expect a bit more action from a purportedly game-centric title. Instead there is a lot of walking and/or standing and looking toward the horizon.
Lucifer (one of the player characters we follow along with) was freakishly bizarre and left me with inexplicable nightmares about mimes trying to strangle me with various kinds of pasta. (This will only make sense to those who've seen the movie. Don't say you haven't been warned...)
Very minor spoiler but...
There were no basset hounds.