Please note, this review contains mature themes.
Let’s recap my clues from last week:
Clue #1– It’s a fairly recent sci-fi release that’s quite dark (now on DVD).
Clue #2– It won an Oscar.
Clue #3– One of its stars appeared in another recent sci-fi release that did not win an Oscar.
So, I think most people figured this out pretty quickly, but let’s see if people thought I liked or didn’t like it.
If anyone is interested in my experience of watching Ex Machina, click here to see my notes.
This review will consist of me asking myself 10 questions and answering them to the best of my ability.
1. What is this film about?
Caleb works for a Google-like company and has just won the company’s lottery (no one really knows what it is). He’s flown to meet the mysterious billionaire owner of the company where he’s faced with a Turing test.
I’m just going to go ahead and say that I’ve watched and read a lot of stories about AI, machines, robots, etc… I’m always looking for the next story to challenge my mind (this annoyed me).
2. What did I think of the title, poster, and or trailer?
I remember seeing a small teaser for the film and then refusing to watch a full trailer. (I have a theory that trailers ruin movies that I really care about. I find that I enjoy movies more when I don’t feel like I’ve already seen the highlights or good parts.) Being a fan a tech tales, man playing god, and so on, I figured this would be a great film for me to catch one day.
3. What did I think of the main character(s) and how the actors performed them?
I like Oscar Isaac, but his character in this film was despicable. I guess that means he played the role well. The other two main actors are unknowns to me, but I guess they did okay. One played an android and the other a pawn. There wasn’t a lot of stretch or imagination to these roles. I don’t think these will be defining performances for these actors (at least I hope not).
4. What did I think of the direction and cinematography?
I like Alex Garland’s screen writing credits, but this film seemed lacking in direction. Maybe lacking isn’t quite the word… The film was focused to a fault. It just didn’t feel real in the slightest. I think he tried too hard to make it dark and eerie.
That’s pretty much all it was, dark and eerie. Plus, I thought there was a lot of unnecessary nudity.
5. What did I think of the soundtrack and score?
This movie almost made me dislike classical music. None of the music matched or felt appropriate to me. Again, it all felt like too much emphasis was put into making the setting dark and eerie.
6. What did I like about the story as a whole?
I like the theme of the story, but that’s pretty much it. I can at least say that I didn’t figure out the point of it all until the end. Usually I give a film points for that (so often I figure it out half way and am left disappointed), but not this film. I was still disappointed.
7. What did I not like about the story?
I just felt like it could have been better overall. The point of the film, to me, in the end was kind of lame. It all came down to sex and or manipulation through sexual arousal and false dependence. This is definitely a psychological thriller, but not one that comes off well.
8. Would I recommend this movie to others?
Probably not. I know a few people, who like me, will watch anything with this basic theme. I’d recommend it to those people just so we could compare our experiences. I get that some people will like this movie, but I’m not one of them.
9. What would I rate this movie?
On a scale of 1 to 5 movie reels, I give this film 2 reels.
10. Was there anything in this movie that could be related to me or anything I have written?
I’ve dabbled a bit with the idea of smart tech and AI. It’s a great premise to build a story around. You can be for it, against it, afraid of it, and more. I’ve sprinkled in a bit of robot tech into the second book of my Eternal Curse Series and I’m sure I’ll make attempts to write about it more. For the most part, though, I simply like to read and watch it.
Watch, rent, or buy this movie here.
Mock Squid Soup – Film Society
MOCK! and The Armchair Squid are proud to introduce Mock Squid Soup: A Film Society. Each month, on the second Friday, we shall host a bloghop devoted to movie reviews. We invite others to participate and post their reviews…Don’t be shy; come join the fun! 😀
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords