Director: Mamoru Oshii
Might as well start with the obvious. Long before Scarlett Johansson was gracing our screens, this tale was being told in print form as a serialized manga starting in 1989 (you’ll find that that’s a somewhat recurring theme here). The 1995 animated feature film is an adaptation of said manga.
A gorgeous, futuristic, dystopian crime thriller in which a cyborg policewoman hunts for a sinister hacker known as The Puppet Master.
While the synopsis could fall flat on paper through the cynical eyes of the present, this noir-ish vision of a cybernetic future formed the basis of inspiration for elements of both The Matrix and Avatar. The sequel, Ghost In The Shell 2: Innocence, is similarly worth your time.