Monday, April 27, 2015

Ex Machina

      A  literate sci-fi thriller that's long on dialogue, short on action but  still compelling due in large part to it's terrific cast and stylized visuals.

       Oscar Isaac stars as a billionaire computer genius who designs an artificially intelligent robot in female form, he names Ava. He brings Domhnall Gleeson, one of his employees and a computer genius himself, to his home to test the self awareness of Ava. Breaking the film into "sessions" the story progresses into a game of cat and mouse between the two men with Ava as the catalyst.

        The script is filled with discussion and questions of humanity and self awareness but dissolves into a predictable final act that distracts from the literate mind games that precede it. The acting is first rate though and Mr. Isaac continues to raise the bar with each of his new films. Alicia Vikander co-stars as Ava and is an exciting new talent. As the two men square off, Ava raises the stakes, turning the increasingly intense sessions into a game of survival.

        The camera holds the viewer in the claustrophobic atmosphere of the film, heightening the building tension between the characters  but the dialogue heavy script eventually collapses under it's own weight until all that is left is "the twist" that most will see coming.

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