Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Review of Ex Machina

Last weekend the DH and I watched Ex Machina. Here is a spoiler free review: Those interested in a thought provoking journey will enjoy this movie. My head was swimming after watching and I wanted time to think about the movie before discussing

Caution spoilers ahead!

Brief thoughts: Why did the AI have to go and do that? 

In depth review: Ex Machina is a journey into our not too distant future. The movie presents a possible scenario in the coming creation of AI. 

The story follows Caleb, a typical geeky computer programmer for an internet search giant, Bluebook. Caleb wins a contest and travels to the CEO, Nathan's house as his prize. Once there Caleb discovers he is to test Ava, an AI by Turing test. 

The movie unfolds in a disturbing manner to me as there is not much description of sequence of events. The story is told in a very visual way and no clues are given about what may be to come (or at least none that I picked up on). Nathan is a very grating character to me as his personality is very jarring. I feel sorry for Caleb winning a trip to the CEO's house because Nathan is neither nice or forthcoming with information about what is going on out in the middle of now where. 

Ok let's just talk about middle of now where, which happens to be very gorgeous. I really enjoyed the scenes where they are outside. Especially epic, for a geologist is the when they hike up the rock face, to the to the glaciers. The house/compound is a modern marvel. I would love to own it. The use of glass in such a setting makes it seem like you are one with nature. I found myself wishing I could own this as a vacation home (in my dreams). 

As the movie progresses Caleb begins to get to know Ava (AI) better and test her. When he starts watching her on the CCTV I found it very creepy. By the end of the movie Caleb has become totally brainwashed by Ava. I don't even think he knows if he is human anymore. 

The ending is pulled off very well. Nathan who always seems to be one step ahead of Caleb has been outsmarted by Caleb. Nathan is toast because of Caleb's forethought, Caleb gets trapped in the decisions he has made, and Ava is free to roam the world to my horror. 

When the scene cuts to Ava at an intersection I feared what could be next for the world with an unkown AI on the loose who had no guilt or who can only simulate emotion to manipulate those that do (us!).

After pondering it for a few days I am glad I watched Ex Machina and give it 4/5 for being a new and different kind of sci-fi movie.

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