27 April 2015

EX MACHINA

EX MACHINA

UK, 2015
Director: Alex Garland

9,5/10











Even though I'm not much of a fan of the British 2007 science-fiction/horror film "Sunshine", written by author / screenwriter Alex Garland ("The Beach") and directed by Danny Boyle ("Trainspotting"), I'm thankful that this movie exists because it (almost) single-handedly revived the classic old-school 70s/80s science-fiction-film and led to widely acclaimed new-school "thinking man's sci-fi" à la Duncan Jones' "Moon", Christopher Nolan's "Interstellar" or last year's
Blade-Runner-homage "The Machine".


After his collabos with Danny Boyle ("28 Days Later" & "Sunshine") and screenplays for Mark Romanek ("Never Let Me Go") & Pete Travis ("Dredd"), Garland finally dared to enter the director's chair to create his very own debut feature "Ex Machina", a staggering science-fiction drama that follows Caleb,
a young programmer who gets the chance to spend a week at the private mountain retreat of Nathan, CEO of the world's largest internet company 'Bluebook', to participate in a fascinating, but also quite dangerous experiment in which he must interact with the world's first true artificial intelligence in the body
of a gorgeous robo-girl...

It's a shame that this movie didn't came out in the 80s or 90s where it surely would have made a bigger impact on audiences, than it does now where the constant amount of plot-less big budget blockbusters numb the cinemagoers into apathy
(I overexaggerate, but I think you get what I mean). So, in this day an age, a movie like "Ex Machina" doesn't work as mainstream cinema, but rather as an semi-indider's-tip for true movie geeks who get a kick out of intelligent slow-pace science fiction, be it old-school ("Blade Runner") 
or new-school ("Under The Skin").


From the very first minutes, you get the feeling that this isn't a film for the masses, but a film FOR smart people made BY smart people. Not only did Garland provide his best and most flawless script to date, he also managed to do a magnificent director's job that should give him lots and lots of attention in the near future. Stunning visuals, slow but intriguing and absolutely breathtaking pacing, a fascinating, extremely thought-provoking and very well developed storyline with lots of totally unpredictable plot twists, many moments and scenes that keep you on the edge of your seat, a climax that is simply gob-smacking, and one of the coolest settings I've seen in a very long time: an ultra-modern facility made of wood, glass and chrome with lots of dim lights, mirrors, and Jackson Pollock paintings #dreamhouse #shutupandtakemymoney

Newcomer Alicia Vikander delivers an outstanding performance as sexy but inscrutable A.I. whose behavior is impossible to decipher. Similarly great is Domhnall Gleeson as quiet and slightly naive computer programmer, and Oscar Isaac as arrogant millionaire-slash-drinker. Cinematographer Rob Hardy ("Boy A") perfectly captures the dark and intense mood of the story, while godfather Geoff Barrow (the genius behind Portishead, one of the greatest bands of all time) and BBC composer Ben Salisbury accompany all the intriguing images with a haunting, brooding electro score. Also very worth mentioning: incredible CGI effects, brilliant sound effects, ace nudity, OMD's "Enola Gay", fun references to Depeche Mode & Ghostbusters + greatest disco dance scene ever!


Who needs unnecessary rubbish-projects like "Blade Runner 2" when you can have fresh, original and unbelievably thought-provoking sci-fi films like
"Ex Machina"? Go Alex. Prove that you're not a a one-trick-pony and mesmerize us with more stuff like that!

13 comments:

  1. Agree with you 100% especially since you indicated that the film was made for smart people which implies I am smart for liking it! ;-)

    So glad that every one is finally getting a chance to see this and is loving it as much as I did.

    It's going to be one of my films of the year.

    I love Sunshine too so I am keeping an eye on Alex Garland

    K :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you're smart, you like it. If not, you'd probably prefer Transformers over this ;)))

      Yeah, it's clearly one of THE highlights of this year. Garland is one helluva talented guy!

      Delete
  2. Great review of a great film. I agreed with almost every line.

    And yeah, that house was incredible. I'd live there so fast.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, makes me proud ^_^
      Omg yeah, I'd love to live, love and die in this work of art!

      Delete
  3. Agreed with you. An extraordinary film on every level.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I hope I like it (if I ever get to see it), although knowing it's slow-paced makes me not quite as enthused. Thanks for the review!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You'd love it. It's an intriguing kind of pace, not boring, not tedious, just gripping and tense.

      Delete
  5. Looking forward to it. Saw a similar film, The Machine, but this sounds many levels above that one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you would have read my review, you would have seen my mentioning of "The Machine"...

      Delete
  6. Think we can all agree on this one, it's a great piece of sci-fi cinema!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh yeah! Everyone seems to love the hell out of it.

      Delete
  7. Plows through its 108-minute running time with a constant sense of doom provided from every source.

    ReplyDelete

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