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  • Benjamin Maio Mackay

Ex-Machina - 1 Star

This average sci-fi thriller deals with the age-old theme of artificial intelligence and brings nothing new to the debate.


Ex-Machina is written and directed by Alex Garland, who is making his directorial debut. While there is nothing visibly wrong with Garland’s script it’s the fact that nothing new is being developed over the course of the film that makes it boring and predictable. As soon as the theme of AI was introduced to the plot, which was quite early on I found it very easy to piece together the rest of the film and it turned out I was right. This movie does have a very predictable ending.


The cast varied with Oscar Isaac being the standout. Isaac’s character had no development throughout the film, yet he still managed to outshine Domhnall Gleeson whose character was supposed to have quite an evolution in every scene. I’ve never been a fan of Gleeson’s work and this film is no exception, his two-dimensional character work was again present in this film making his character distant and unable to be emphasised with. Alicia Vikander played the AI and while her character was weak she did bring some talent to the role, but her performance was not in any way outstanding.


The one clever aspect of this film was its outstanding score from Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow. The music was intense and was easily relatable to the scenes and often at times helped to build up suspense in the film. The cinematography was also strong, and the way cinematographer Rob Hardy captured the panoramic views of the location shoot was enchanting.


Overall this sci-fi thriller is certainly one that can be missed, as it certainly doesn’t offer anything extraordinary.


1 Star

Review by Benjamin Maio Mackay

Screening courtesy of Palace Nova Cinemas

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