Tau (2018)

tau poster 2018 movie netflix
4.5 Overall Score
Story: 4/10
Acting: 5/10
Visuals: 7/10

Decently shot

Story just doesn't develop or go anywhere new or interesting

Movie Info

Movie Name:   Tau

Studio:   Addictive Films

Genre(s):   Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s):   June 29, 2018

MPAA Rating:   R

tau torture mask julia maika monroe

Wait…what type of movie is this?

Julia (Maika Monroe) has been surviving on the streets stealing and selling to make ends meet.  When she is kidnapped by a famed inventor named Alex (Ed Skrein), she finds herself held prisoner in Alex’s high tech home and under the guard of a deadly watchdog robot named    .  Julia’s must escape and her only hope might be Tau (voiced by Gary Oldman) who serves as Alex’s home computer.  Julia must trick Tau into helping her find a way out…but Tau could teach Julia things as well.

Directed by Federico D’Alessandro, Tau is a science-fiction thriller.  The movie was purchased by Netflix and released on June 29, 2018.

Smart homes are the rage.  While the idea of smart homes as a horror aspect has been done before and even the idea of a caring smart home was explored in the old stories like Ray Bradbury’s “The Veldt”, but now smart homes have reached a new level that is worth exploring…but Tau doesn’t do it.

tau robot netflix

Attack of the generic killer robot!

Tau suffers from identity crisis (ironically since it is essentially about a computer with an identity crisis).  At first it seems like it is being set up as almost a Saw-esque horror film which it quickly veers away from (also leaving you wondering what the goal of Alex’s experiment is).  It then decides it wants to be a smart science-fiction film…but never asks any interesting questions or presents any interesting ideas.  The Tau character is kind of interesting, but sentient computers have been around since HAL…and people have been trying to trick/befriend them for that long too.

The cast is rather lackluster.  The Julia character really needs to be edgy and have a real dark streak inside of her to help her characters motivation and Maika Monroe doesn’t have it.  Likewise Ed Skrein needs to be an almost Patrick Bateman scary serial killer type, but he also lacks the edge.  Gary Oldman is the only one who really works to create a rounded character in Tau, but the screenplay lets him down.

tau computer netflix

Why is this shot more compelling than most of the movie?

The movie does have some nice and interestingly shot visuals.  It has solid decent framing and the minimal look of Tau works, but the set for the film looks like a generic set.  It doesn’t look high-tech, classy, or interesting…it just looks cheap (which is too bad because there is potential with the cinematography).

Tau essentially is Alexa can save your life and be your best friend.  With the rise of smart tech and films like Ex Machina, I wanted more from Tau and didn’t receive it.  While it has potentially interesting set-ups, it fails to utilize them and comes off as a SyFy Channel Saturday night movie instead of a science fiction that is another tier up…which is unfortunate.

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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