Ex Machina (2015)

Ex Machina (2015) is a sci-fi drama about the talented computer programmer named Caleb. He is fortunate enough to win a competition in his office, and gets to spend one-on-one time with the eccentric and secluded CEO of his company. Caleb gets to help out with a special project in the field of artificial intelligence, and his assignment is to determine whether or not the CEO’s home-built android passes the Turing Test. Passing the test would mean that its responses should be indistinguishable from that of a human being, and what he finds during this trial touches, in a way, questions on the essence of humanity. What does it take to be human? Is it having flesh and bones, or could a sufficiently accurate computer simulation be enough?

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V for Vendetta (2005)

V for Vendetta (2005) is a movie set in the near future where Great Britain has become a fascist state and a masked vigilante known as “V” conducts guerrilla warfare against the British Government. When “V” rescues a young woman from being arrested by the secret police, he finds an ally to fight the oppressive government forces.

It’s easy to see the parallels with the classic dystopian fiction 1984, both having the totalitarian state and a control of fear. What sets this movie apart is the anarchist vigilante having a firm agenda and executing on it with absolute precision.

Score: 9/10 (Superb)

Upside Down (2013)

Upside Down (2013) is a movie about Adam and Eden and their improbable love story.

In an alternate universe where twinned worlds have opposite gravities, a young man battles interplanetary prejudice and the laws of physics in his quest to reunite with the long-lost girl of his dreams in this visually stunning romantic adventure that poses the question: what if love was stronger than gravity?

While this movie is visually stunning and provides interesting conundrums, it is sadly filled with plot holes and has a terribly weak story.

Score: 5/10 (Meh)

Watchmen (2009)

Watchmen (2009) is the second Zack Snyder movie I have seen in a short period of time. Instead of alternate realities of the mind in Sucker Punch, Watchmen is about an alternate 1985 where superheroes exist.

We follow Rorschach in a murder investigation where he uncovers a horrific truth which could change the course of history and life on our planet as we know it.

I have put off seeing this movie for quite some time, mostly because of its length. What I didn’t realize was that the movie could in fact hold its own and never become boring during its three hours director’s cut edition.

While I have never read the original graphic novel on which the movie was based on, I can see strong influences from for instance Dr Strangelove and perhaps even Sin City.

If you want to see a superhero movie but without most of the usual clichés, watch this.

Score: 7/10 (Good)

Frequently Asked Questions About Time Travel

Frequently Asked Questions About Time Travel (2009) is a British movie about two geeks and a cynic Ray, Toby and Pete. As they enter a normal pub to have a pint or two, weird things start happening. They find themselves attempting to navigate through a time-travel conundrum with their lives at stake.

A woman Ray meets at the bar (Cassie), proves to be helpful navigating the many time-loops and Grandfather Paradoxes, since she is not from around there.

When starting to watch this movie, I admit to not having, well, any expectations at all. The cover is cheesy at best, and I thought it would be of those movies. I was wrong. FAQ About Time Travel is a very well thought-out movie with a surprisingly well-written story and several surprises which kept you on your toes at all times.

Anna Faris plays her role well, but the most interesting was to see Ray (Chris O’Dowd) from The IT Crowd do a very different person. It was weird at first, but he did it very well.

This movie has been described as a sci-fi version of Shaun of the Dead (except the zombies are replaced with time travel), and I have to agree. It may not reach the same cult status, but it did have its moments.

Score: 7/10 (Good)

The Box

The Box (2009) is the story about a young couple struggling to get by, who one day receives a mysterious box on their porch. The box contains an encased button, and when pushed, one million dollars will be given to them in cash. Another consequence of pushing this button however, is that one human being somewhere in the world that they do not know, is going to die.

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Knowing

Knowing (2009) tells the story about a teacher who opens a time capsule with pictures drawn by school children 50 years earlier. One of the pictures stand out, containing predictions on things that have been and things to come.

This is the second time I have seen this movie, and it’s a decent movie with a great start. After a while though, things start getting strange, with weird special effects and plot holes everywhere (what about the stones?). And when you expect the credits to roll, it continues for a few minutes just for the sake of it.

The movie had decent entertainment value though and has a good combination of sci-fi, thriller and drama to make this interesting to keep watching.

Cargo

Cargo (2009) is a Swiss movie about a cargo ship called Kassandra, which is to transport construction material. A doctor named Laura joins the crew to fund her trip to be reunited with her sister who lives on another planet.

On the way to their destination weird things start to happen, and as they investigate the problem, they become prey of a deadly cat and mouse game.

The first thing that popped into my head when watching this movie is that it touches on similar issues as Moon, loneliness and isolation. No only that, there are many similarities to another recent space movie called Pandorum, not to mention the Cube movies to some degree. The biggest similarity however, is the ripoff of the Matrix concept, which will be blatantly apparent when you watch this movie.

The biggest problem with this movie however, are plot holes the size of Uranus. Not to mention a weird and totally out of place off-camera sex scene, and of course seeing the same woman walk though the same dark corridor a myriad of times.

A for effort though, as one can tell that the director and the writers have poured their heart into making this movie.