Legal Alien: A Scotsman in Montreal

Who Stole it First?
Went to see Spiderman 2 last night and was pretty impressed, certainly one of the better movies I've seen recently. I even liked the way they went all 1950s horror on us, and had lots of swooping close-ups of women screaming whilst something approaches/flies over them. Of course, the last 5 minutes was completely unnecessary, the film had already finished but they just had to set up Spiderman 3. Still, I think I preferred it over the original and that doesn't happen often - even if just because the product placement wasn't so blatant. I think it helped that it wasn't the new big thing this summer and so wasn't overhyped.

Anyway, the real reason for the post is about the trailers we saw. In patricular, the trailer for I, Robot, the Will Smith movie that takes sci-fi great Isaac Asimov's title and three laws of robotics, ignores the rest of the book and creates a sequel to Bladerunner. Fair enough. Except the first line of the trailer reads like this:

Ever since the very first computer, there's always been a ghost in the machine.

I'm sorry, "ghost in the machine"? That sounds awfully, awfully familiar to Ghost in the Shell , an anime film and series about which I have previously raved and which deals with the integration of robots and humans and the potential for AI to develop a soul. Maybe it wouldn't be so bad as there aren't many ainme fans out there who'll pick up the similarity - but the second GitS film Innocence, (check out the site, it rocks) was up for the major award at Cannes (that went to Michael Moore's Farenheit 9/11).

Of course, I thought about it some more, and maybe it wasn't the original idea in the anime, and it was copied from Asimov himself... but after looking on the internet, I can't see Asimov being credited with the ghost in the machine line anywhere.

Oh, and to top it off, look at the similarities in the robots...