Film Review: Ex Machina

Film Reviews copy

After winning a contest, Caleb finds himself in the middle of nowhere, unable to contact the outside world. The reason? An A.I that requires testing to see if it can function as a human being.

Caleb is quickly drawn to the A.I – Ava – and vows to try and help her escape from her room/cell. Her creator – Nathan – only sees her as a robot and not a real conscious being, but Caleb wants to help.

But Caleb doesn’t know what he has got himself into. Does he trust humanity or machinery? If a consciousness is truly advanced, can it also lie?

Film: Ex Machina

Director:  Alex Garland

Date: 2015

Rating: 4/5

Ex Machina seems to have been the cover film for lovefilm for months, hence why I decided I would give it a go. I didn’t plan on reviewing it initially, but as fate would have it, it made the list. The way I would sum up this film is that it gets in your head, especially the last half an hour.

The plot – on the surface – is straightforward. Caleb is sworn to secrecy and must test Ava – an advanced Artificial Intelligence – to see if she can function as a human being. His employer, Nathan, wants to perfect the science before his competitors, just because he can.

But when Ava starts to hint that Nathan is lying to Caleb, things are no longer straightforward, but a complex web of lies and deceit – and Caleb has no idea who is telling him the truth.

Caleb’s character was average – I didn’t empathise with him to a great extent, nor did I dislike him. I couldn’t like Nathan – but felt that was the point of the plot that he played the role of the “bad guy” for most of the film.

Ava was a complicated one – I liked her initially but the depth of her characterisation made it hard to determine whether I should be rooting for her or not.

This wasn’t, however, a character based film. It’s a mine-field of deception, bringing into question a lot about humanity: does Nathan have the right to destroy Ava just because she is a robot? Does that give him the power of Gods? What is the future for humanity?

The last half an hour of this film was by far the most powerful. You have to be paying attention, that’s for sure, in order to keep up with who is betraying who. Ex Machina is the first film in a while where I haven’t been able to predict anything!

Despite not knowing what I was letting myself in for, I thoroughly enjoyed this film. Not one to watch multiple times once you know the twists, it is still, nevertheless, an enjoyable film that could lead to some deep questions if you let it. A recommendation from here!

Amazon | HMV


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