Ex Machina - Best Movie of 2015...So Far!!

John Watson By John Watson, 17th May 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Reviews>Film & TV>Science Fiction

Ex Machina is an instant science fiction classic that may also be the best movie of the year so far.

The Premise

A budding young software coder wins a contest to spend a week with a computer genius as his secret compound. While there, the young man is asked to spend time with an artificial intelligence (AI) robot totest her "human"abilities. What follows is a psychological mystery that slowly but surely unravels before your eyes.

My Thoughts On Ex Machina

I remember seeing the trailer for Ex Machina a few months ago,and I have to say that I was intrigued with the concept from the very first moment. The movie is in very limited release, so actually getting to see it was something of a challenge. If you have yet to see it, I suggest that you check around to see where it's playing, as you will not be disappointed, especially if you are a fan of sci-fi.

There are essentially only 3 major characters in the show: Caleb, the ambitious young programmer, played by Domhnall Gleason; Nathan, the billionaire genius played by Oscar Isaac; and Ava, the AI robot played by Alicia Vikander. It is not a cast that is well-known, but each of their performances is brilliant,making it impossible for you to take your eyes off the screen, even for a moment.

The movie begins with Caleb being informed that he has won a company contest that will allow him to spend a week at the secluded compound of billionaire owner Nathan. He is not entirely sure what his time there will entail, and is a little alarmed to find that Nathan spends most of his time in an alcohol infused stupor. What he learns is that he has been tasked to have a conversation with Ava to see if she passes the Turing Test (a complex testing system for AI beings).

The two are separated by glass, as Ava spends here days in a glass encased room that is nothing more than a pretty looking prison cell. The compound experiences frequent power outages that Nathan cannot figure out, and it is during those moments that the conversations between Caleb and Ava take some rather strange turns.

The compound is mostly underground, and there is a definite feeling of claustrophobia that helps add to the creepy atmosphere of the movie. Director Alex Garland (28 Days Later), who also wrote the screenplay, does a masterful job of making you feel on edge as you watch, whilst also creating an aura of paranoia and suspicion. You never really know what anyone's motives are, right up until the very end.

I had a number of theories blown out the water at various stages of the movie, and the ending was something that I most certainly not see coming. I have seen some reviews where folks have been left a little underwhelmed by the final act, but that was not the case for me at all.

My Final Thoughts and Rating

If you are a fan of the blockbuster summer movies, where everything in sight gets destroyed by alien hordes or battling superheroes, you may not get much of a kick out of this one. If, on the other hand, you like an intelligently written, beautifully paced movie that leaves you thinking, Ex Machina is a must see.

Yes, it's still very early in the year, but this is the best movie of 2015 for me right now. I found it to be original, interesting, and really well written and acted. It's the type of movie that will likely get lost in the shuffle at this time of year,but I really do think you should go out of your way to find out if it is playing near you.

My rating: 4.5 out of 5


Movies, Review, Sci-Fi

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author avatar John Watson
A full-time freelance writer, I touch on a number of different subject.

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author avatar Ptrikha
18th May 2015 (#)

What an Outstanding review of the Movie. Makes me feel like watching it!

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author avatar GV Rama Rao
20th Sep 2015 (#)

An excellent review. Somehow I seem to have missed it in Orlando. I'll check it out now.

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