Alita: Battle Angel

Critics Consensus

Alita: Battle Angel's story struggles to keep up with its special effects, but fans of futuristic sci-fi action may still find themselves more than sufficiently entertained.

60%

TOMATOMETER

Reviews Counted: 290

94%
liked it

Audience Score

User Ratings: 29,161

TOMATOMETER

N/A
All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0

AUDIENCE SCORE

94%
Average Rating: 4.6/5

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Movie Info

From visionary filmmakers James Cameron (AVATAR) and Robert Rodriguez (SIN CITY), comes ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL, an epic adventure of hope and empowerment. When Alita (Rosa Salazar) awakens with no memory of who she is in a future world she does not recognize, she is taken in by Ido (Christoph Waltz), a compassionate doctor who realizes that somewhere in this abandoned cyborg shell is the heart and soul of a young woman with an extraordinary past. As Alita learns to navigate her new life and the treacherous streets of Iron City, Ido tries to shield her from her mysterious history while her street-smart new friend Hugo (Keean Johnson) offers instead to help trigger her memories. But it is only when the deadly and corrupt forces that run the city come after Alita that she discovers a clue to her past - she has unique fighting abilities that those in power will stop at nothing to control. If she can stay out of their grasp, she could be the key to saving her friends, her family and the world she's grown to love.

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Critic Reviews for Alita: Battle Angel

All Critics (290) | Top Critics (38)

  • It suffers because like most of the Cameron stories, its not a deep story and unfortunately the special effects are really strong, but they are not revolutionary.

    Mar 4, 2019 | Full Review…
  • It's goofy as hell and borderline inexcusable at times, but it's also kind of glorious.

    Feb 16, 2019 | Full Review…

    Sam Adams

    Slate
    Top Critic
  • I loved watching this sci-fi spectacle's moving parts. I just couldn't get past its brain.

    Feb 15, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Attending the movies should not come with homework assignments, and if a film only works if you study its backstory in advance, there is something terribly wrong.

    Feb 15, 2019 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • Basically, we're talking about a lot of human heads doing a lot of insulting and quipping and grunting and groaning while atop all manner of fighting cyborg bodies

    Feb 14, 2019 | Rating: 1.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Alita too often feels thin, despite a surfeit of heavy-hitting talent.

    Feb 14, 2019 | Full Review…

    Chris Klimek

    NPR
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Alita: Battle Angel

½

James Cameron has been dreaming about making Alita: Battle Angel for decades. He bought the rights to the 90s manga and has been sitting on the property, having to continuously push it back because of technological demands and the demands of, at last count, a thousand Avatar sequels. Cameron co-wrote the screenplay and handed the directorial duties over to Robert Rodriguez (Sin City), a talented visual stylist who has been struggling of late. The marriage looks good and the final 122-minute feature is the closest a live-action film has ever gotten into replicating the look and feel of an anime, for better and worse. Hundreds of years after the fall of civilization, a lonely scrapper and doctor, Dr. Ido (Christoph Waltz) discovers the remains of a cyborg with a still beating heart. He puts her back together with a new body and names her Alita (Rosa Salazar). Sheâ(TM)s special and learning about the big new world, trying to unlock her memories of the past, and weâ(TM)re talking way way back into the past. Sheâ(TM)s old technology, something thatâ(TM)s quite valuable for the street gangs that strip amputees for parts and for the global corporation whose emissary (Mahershala Ali) needs to reclaim the powerful tech. Alita falls in love, learns about her sense of humanity, and fights lots and lots of robotic villains.

Nate Zoebl
Nate Zoebl

Super Reviewer

½

I can't think of a better example of uncanny valley than this distasteful movie, with its creepy-looking protagonist full of CGI on her face - and as for the rest, the plot is a dull, convoluted mess, the characters are flat and lifeless, and the dialogue is pretty much terrible.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

So much fun!

Jon Lantz
Jon Lantz

Super Reviewer

½

BAA is a solid Scifi action filled bonanza with a strong narrative. Condensing an exuberant amount of content from the source material but often feeling like it's just trying to do too much all at once. Some characters and ideas needed a little fleshing out before playing their larger roles in the story, whereas others probably should not have been introduced altogether but an obligation to the original works would've made such an omittance criminal. There's a lot of exciting big ideas in BAA and as any good Scifi goes it's the core human themes that tie it together and make it relatable. Unfortunately I still stand by the idea that Alita's CGI-face is just too distracting in a lot of solemn moments that would have really resonated. Instead I'm constantly getting this fish-out-of-water video-game character vibe from her that just doesn't mesh into this very real, gritty, dystopian world that the film is trying to sell me. This feeling of disconnect clashes with the core themes, what is real? What is it to be human? Sci fi staples that get undermined making this whole fabricated world lose a lot of its credibility. The story could've been written neater with less throwaway elements that reference the source material, your suspense of disbelief is constantly tested in ways that you don't want it to be. All-in-all though BAA delivers a riveting tale of a cybernetic girl's coming-of-age in a rough unforgiving world at a time when strong female leads is exactly what we need.

Drake Tsui
Drake Tsui

Super Reviewer

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