The Best Old Movies on a Big Screen This Week: NYC Repertory Cinema Picks, March 22-28

nyc repertory-ghost in the shellGhost in the Shell (1995)
Directed by Mamoru Oshii
Released on the same day in Japan, the United States and elsewhere, this animated film searches deep for what is common to us all: what it means to be human, to have a conscience, feelings… a soul, if you wish. These questions and philosophical musings are filtered through the non-race-specific female cyborg protagonist, who’s the muscle of a public security agency in charge of catching the hackers who are damaging the cyber-dependent landscape of Tokyo. If the concept of robots confronting human emotions seems a bit trite at this point, it’s because this anime originated that question in the world of film, and its legacy is present in all sci-fi cinema since—not just in a remake that’s been attracting unnecessary and undeserved controversy. Jaime Grijalba (March 24-30, showtimes daily, at the Metrograph’s “The Singularity”)