Ex Machina (2015)

ex machina poster 2015 movie alicia vikander robot
9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 9/10
Visuals: 9/10

Strong cast, great looking, good story


Movie Info

Movie Name:  Ex Machina

Studio:  DNA Films

Genre(s):  Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Drama

Release Date(s):  January 21, 2015

MPAA Rating:  R


So Ava…plotting anything?

Caleb Smith (Domhnall Gleeson) has been given an assignment by his extremely rich and reclusive boss Nathan Bateman (Oscar Isaac).  Nathan has been experimenting with artificial intelligence and believes he’s finally stumbled upon it.  Caleb meets Ava (Alicia Vikander) who appears as a robot, but potentially thinks like a human.  Applying the Turing Test to Ava might be difficult in that Ava almost goes beyond the test parameters in appearance alone.  When Ava begins to reveal that she not only has feelings for Caleb but that Nathan might not be telling the truth, Caleb starts to wonder if this is all part of the test.


Every movie needs a disco breakdown!

Written and directed by Alex Garland, Ex Machina is a sci-fi drama with horror aspects.  The movie was released to critical acclaim and won an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects with a nomination for Best Original Screenplay.

Ex Machina was one of those movies that looks really good on the surface from trailers, but you worry isn’t going to be very good in reality.  When I started hearing real positive buzz around the film, I was excited but never got to see it in the theater.  I’m glad I’ve gotten to see it now because I think it will go down as one of those cult classics over the years.  There will be a *****Spoiler Alert***** throughout this review.


That awkward moment when your ex-creation runs into your current creation

Much like something like Blade Runner, Ex Machina deals with the concept of what signifies life.  It is true science fiction in that it is dealing with concepts and ideas and not simply a drama about a robot.  Ava is a complex character who shows a calculated computerized need for survival but also the humanistic idea of doing anything to achieve it.  It is an interesting idea that one of the first things a robot would learn to do is lie to live.

The cast is great.  All three players really milk their roles.  Domhnall is good as the man caught in the middle of a war of trust and does a good job of attempting to be an independent thinker.  Oscar Isaac continues to prove his skill as an actor and that he’s one of the movie’s rising stars.      Really explodes in this movie and the cold and calculating Ava.  Many critics (rightfully) placed her in the Best Supporting Actress category for the performance, but she knocked herself out by giving a nominated strong performance in The Danish Girl as well.  I also feel that Sonoya Mizuno is a bit overlooked as the manufactured sex slave of Isaac.


You always stab the ones you hate…

Visually the movie is also powerful.  I love when science-fiction mixes with real world.  Isaac’s house is a modern playground, but it still feels like a real house and is surrounded by a great setting.  Ava’s design and look mixes great with the real world sci-fi look.

Ex Machina is one of those movies that I think will be talked about a while with a growing fan base.  The stars are on the rise and concept is smart; plus, the film looks great.  Even if you go into Ex Machina with high expectations due to pre-movie buzz, I think that you’ll be satisfied with the movie.   Long-live Ava!

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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