Monday, February 15, 2016
Ex Machina by Alex Garland, 2015 (R)
with Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson
Caleb Smith (Domhnall Gleeson) a programmer at a huge Internet company, wins a contest that enables him to spend a week at the private estate of Nathan Bateman (Oscar Isaac), his firm's brilliant CEO. When he arrives, Caleb learns that he has been chosen to be the human component in a Turing test to determine the capabilities and consciousness of Ava (Alicia Vikander), a beautiful robot. However, it soon becomes evident that Ava is far more self-aware and deceptive than either man imagined.
Ex Machina is a disturbing experiment that puts you in the most high tech setting, in the middle of the purest of nature, with a feeling of claustrophobia combined with a manipulating and brilliant script that bounce you from one vision to its opposite the moment you start believing in it, keeping you alert until the very end. It is disturbing as the robots are more humane than the humans, and the performance of Alicia Vikander is quite extraordinary in making us shift from our perception of her as a human to little by little seeing her as a humanoid. I do hope they get the Oscar for Best Script.