Ex Machina

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Hosted by Remi Lavictoire and Jonathan Colbon

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This week on The Sci-Fi Movie Podcast, Jonathan and Rem discuss “Ex Machina” from 2015 and directed by Alex Garland.

Initial Ratings (0 to 10)

Jonathan: 9.0 Creepy Robots
Rem: 9.1 Broken Robotic Limbs

The Positive
Ex Machina is a perfect example of great Sci-Fi, and is absolutely essential viewing. Rem loved the cast, and Oscar Isaac in particular. Jonathan really enjoyed the music score, and found it perfect for the mood of the story being told.

The Negative
Ex Machina is not a fast paced action movie, and requires the viewer to really pay attention. In a world of bigger and faster, it might be tough to watch by younger audiences.

Verdict 
Possibly one of the most important films we’ve discussed on The Sci-Fi Movie Podcast. This is a fascinating exploration about the relationship between Humanity and Technology, and it’s one of our best examples of essential Sci-Fi viewing.

Learn more about The Turing Test

Book Reference

“Embodiment and the Inner Life: Cognition and Consciousness in the Space of Possible Minds”

Other Films similar to “Ex Machina”

The Tinder Experiment

A Robot Wedding in Japan

Humans Marrying Robots?

Listener Feedback

Fox Sterling
I think some people will be marrying robots but the majority of us will stick to people. By the time we all can marry them they will have already taken over and wiped out humanity. Except for one ragtag group of resisters led by a man named John Connor.

Jennifer Robertson
Of all the possible fears there are in the sci-fi universe, robots and AI are not high on my threat list. I’ve seen how far we have come in robot technology (and it is underwhelming to say the least) and if my predictive text and auto correct on my cell phone is any indication, the AI isn’t that much ahead of it.

Bandrew Scott
This is one of those films that prove, you don’t need large casts, huge sets, or massive explosions to make a good film. This is a prime example of what can be accomplished with good vision. Not only is the story telling amazing, but the set design is gorgeous, the special effects are seamless, and the acting is as flawless as you can get. All around, one of my favorite SciFi films of all time. Absolutely essential SciFi viewing.

Jamie Piper
Love this film , it’s deep thought provoking and haunting. Special effects are great on such a small budget and Oscar issacs dance scene is the best . As for robots leading to humanity’s down fall , who cares if their this hot ! Great work on the podcast guys , still the best !

Russ Layton
Surrogates

Erik Feten
I enjoyed it, but it didn’t bowl me over the way it did for so many others. I may have gone into it with too many expectations.

Michael Simshauser
Will most likely be watching this weekend as its a 99c rental on ITunes Australia.

Nick Jensen
Marrying robots? Probably, I think a guy in Japan legally married a sex pillow so this is definitely in our future. This movie is amazing, it embodies what great sci-fi should be; awesome thought provoking story with amazing special effects. Love when an original movie like this comes around, makes me proud to be a sci-fi fan.

James Rogers
haunting future…goooood movie

Jim Goodman
I didn’t enjoy this film as much as I wanted to. I had heard nothing but good things about it before seeing it. For me this is just another Frankenstein retelling with a fresh CGI coat of paint. Good performances and beautiful sets did not make up for this 200 year old story that has been done to death.

Bobby Rafuse
Well, after watching for the first time with my brother today I can say we were both digging from start to end. Great performances from the cast. I’m now going to have to check out the anime it’s based from Appleseed. As for the question of AI. I think it’s a door we probably shouldn’t be knocking on so quickly. This movie kinda shows that a little haha I almost see it as an inevitable that they would end up revolting & destroy us with the way our race is.

Daniele Tottle
Spoiler alert, don’t read this comment if you have not seen the movie /// I thought the movie had great potential and did a lot of things right. Great setting with a strong opening story and a beautiful photography/cinematography. But it fell short in the final act due to the characters. The performances were great but writing-wise Nathan and Caleb were so one-dimensional and absurd that when they died i could not care less. Ava was written better, a deeper character for sure, but when she started her killing spree i felt violently pulled out of the story and even a little insulted. It seemed like the writers had a brilliant movie in mind but could not find a decent ending that didn’t involve the most cliché final act of all time. Eager to hear what you guys thought about it. It’s great listening to you, don’t ever stop sci-fiing!

Bob Zerull
Ex Machina is a masterpiece. A24 is knocking it out of the park with movies like this, Enemy, Under the Skin smile emoticon and The Witch. This movie should’ve been nominated for an Oscar.

Brian Campbell
Jonathan is already married, but there’s hope for you Remi!

Todd E. Waters 
@ScifiMovieGuys Enjoyed it, but not sure what all the fuss was about. Perhaps I missed the point.

Karlis from England dropped us an email…

Hi Remi and Jonathan,

I don’t tend to write in about each film but after seeing this one recently i just had to write something about it because it felt like something a bit different. I absolutely loved it. Not just for the wonderful dialogue and clever plot that kept me guessing all the way through as i flip flopped between who had the power and who to trust but it was wonderfully made from the bottom up. The subtle touches were wonderfully clever and thought out. It starts with sweeping overhead shots showing the vast wilderness before leading us into the small claustrophobic and controlled world of Nathan done to show us the stark contrast between the two worlds. One full of life and unruly the other plain and mechanical. The use of colour is a wonderful touch. With the red of the power outage actually giving is a hint that this is dangerous. I wondered at the end if ava leaving caleb at the end was due to a lack of empathy or of it was that she partly felt that he would jeopardize her freedom or because maybe she felt so little for him she didn’t even care enough to finish him off. Where as she wanted to end Nathan’s story. Aside from the story I think this could be a decision made by the filmmakers to show the seduction of technology and how its advancement and progress could lead to our entrapment losing some of our freedom, which is sort of like everyone being buried in their phones. The subtext about society and the questions of what it means to be alive gives this film a lot of depth and a lot to think about afterwards but really what i love about this film is the performances, the pace and the slow development of the plot. As Caleb learns more so do we as viewers and due to this fact the end is a surprise because it’s the first time we have not been shown exactly what Caleb is seeing.

Overall this is a wonderfully made film deserving of the plaudits it got.
I think this should be viewed as essential sci fi viewing.

All the best

Karlis (Leicestershire, England)

 

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Ex Machina – Sci Fi Movie Podcast