I watched this mainly because it was produced by James Cameron, and I was curious to see if his perfectionist fingerprints were all over it. They indeed were. I know that this was directed by Robert Rodriguez, but it was definitely a joint effort. You can see Cameron's contributions in how meticulously the engineering of the world is conceived, how meticulously the action scenes are constructed. They're all unique, easy to follow, and visually distinct from each other. They don't become the same after a while, and you can watch more or less any part of this movie and say, "That was the best part," which reminds me of T2: Judgment Day. Also, you can see Cameron's involvement in the way that the film is paced, because even though this movie is packed, it also takes its time to build up the story and move through the various plot points. Cameron always pushed to have his stories more drawn out.
The only downside in this is that by the time the movie was near its end, I thought that it would go on for another hour. It felt like this was going to be a genuinely lengthy epic with three hours of buildup to the climax. As it turns out, it was almost exactly two hours, and it ended on a terrible cliffhanger. It did not give me the emotional resolution that I was looking for. I was pretty disappointed that the film ultimately didn't bring us to the Big Picture conflict that defined the setting, and instead it I watched the first two acts of a movie before being cut off from the juicy third act.
Otherwise, every moment of the film, in the moment, is pretty good. I'm never bored with the characters, the visuals, the worldbuilding, the action, and the conflict at any point. That's all pretty good. Alita was definitely a great character, as many people have been saying. Again, the only real problem is that it ends so abruptly. I strongly believe that this should have been a three-hour movie. It had the feel for one. Hopefully there will be a sequel, but I would have preferred a standalone movie that ran extra on time, since that would have been more epic and cinematic.