Rated: PG-13
Release Date: 02/14/2019
Production Company: 20th Century Fox

Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Ed Skrein, Jackie Earle Haley and Keean Johnson.

Director: Robert Rodriguez. Producers: James Cameron, Jon Landau and David Womack. Executive Producer: David Valdes. Screenwriters: Robert Rodriguez, James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis. (Based on the Graphic Novel: "Gunnm" by Yukito Kishiro). Cinematographer: Bill Pope.
By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

The best way to watch the sci-fi thriller “Alita: Battle Angel” is in IMAX 3-D. It’s a truly heightened cinematic experience that way. Bigger is definitely better and “Alita: Battle Angel” is a sprawling and visual treat.

The cyber drama, from director Robert Rodriguez (Sin City: A Dame to Kill For” and TV’s “Spy Kids: Mission Critical”), is based on Yukito Kishiro's manga series “Gunnm.”

“Alita: Battle Angel” has been an overdue passion project for James Cameron (“Avatar” and “Titanic”) who produced and co-wrote the film and after many stops and starts. Every penny of its nearly $200 million production budget is put to good use on eye-popping stunts and special effects.

The year is 2563 and a catastrophic war has left Earth in shambles. A cyber-surgeon named Dr. Dyson Ido (Christoph Waltz, “Downsizing”) is surveying the ruins in a junkyard located in the metropolis of Iron City.

It’s here he finds a severely damaged female cyborg. Strangely, her brain is intact. Fascinated by his discovery, Dr. Ido takes the cyborg home and works to rebuild it. And just like that he’s created a droid, who he affectionately names Alita after his deceased daughter.

The big, bright eyed robo-teen (played through motion capture by Rosa Salazar, “The Kindergarten Teacher” and TV’s “Bird Box”), brings a striking authenticity and realistic approach to the performance.

Alita has no recollection of her past. Against Dr. Ido’s wishes, she wanders away from home and meets a boy named Hugo (Keann Johnson, TV’s “Notorious”) who is a talented skater. Hugo would love to live in the wealthy sky city of Zalem. His skills on wheels could get him their soon.

Hugo introduces Alita to the competitive and brutal sport of Motorball, the Iron City’s major spectator sport where cyborgs battle to the death and winners can punch their ticket to Zalem.

Nothing is ever as easy as it seems. Dr. Ido’s ex-wife Chiren (a glamourous Jennifer Connelly, TV’s “Snowpiercer”) has teamed with the conniving Vector, (Mahershala Ali, “Green Book”) to rig the games.

Suddenly Alita must defend herself against them as well as a group of killer cyborgs and a cyborg bounty hunter (Ed Skrein, “If Beale Street Could Talk”), who are gunning for her.

During the battles, Alita discovers some secret powers within her which helps her slowly recall and piece together her true origins and identity as she desperately tries to save the world.

Although “Alita: Battle Angel” becomes a bit convoluted with several characters popping in and out, the special effects trump that weightiness and makes it fly.

Editor's Note: Be sure to catch my movie talk segment on the Kitty O'Neal Show Fridays now at 6:20 p.m. on radio station KFBK 1530 AM and 93.1 FM.

Take A Look At This Trailer For "ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL"

Lana K. Wilson-Combs is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics’ Association (BFCA), The Black Film Critics Circle (BFCC), The Alliance Of Women Film Journalists (AWFJ) and a Nominating Committee Voting Member for the NAACP Image Awards.


<b>“The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings.”</b> Title: “The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings.”
Year Released: 1977
Running Time: 110
Production Company: Universal Pictures
Director: John Badham
Director of Photography: Bill Butler
Screenwriter: William Brashler
Author: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

REVIEW: It must have been my recent chance meeting with former Dodger legend Dusty Baker that turned my attention to the Dodgers and baseball in particular. Then again, baseball season is right around the corner, so this review was just meant to me.

The truth is, I realized I hadn’t reviewed any baseball movies in a long time. One of my favorite...
Which Of The Following Stars of "The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings" Won A Tony Award As "Best Supporting Actor In A Musical?"
"Ted Ross"
"Richard Pryor"
"Billy Dee Williams'"
" James Earl Jones"