Film Review: Ex Machina (Domhnall Gleeson, Alicia Vikander, Oscar Isaac) A story of artificial intelligence & treachery

Ex Machina, with Domhnall Gleeson, Alicia Vikander, Oscar Isaac.  Director, Alex Garland.  I was looking for a little more than I received & though the special effects, performances & concept was superb; the story was a whole lot of nothing.  One twist does not a good film make.

Gleeson was excellent, portraying an awkward code writer whose won a trip to the presence of his employer, a tech super-mogul played perfectly by Isaac.  His disturbing nerd stage presence is almost painful to watch.  I don’t like nerds & am not sympathetic to their expression on the big screen.  However; his casting seemed to fit the bill, while the inclusion of his character in the story was doubtful.

The movie was a simple graduation of arrival, at the mogul’s research facility on a far northern estate, to the destination being the eccentric presence of Isaac’s arrogant & suspicious-from-the-start character.  Sort of like the buildup one expects when getting  ready to visit dinosaur island in another film.  But, the climax of this journey is basically the only plateau that we find.  The rest of the film coasting along with little or no substance.

Vikander is fabulously accurate as the object of desire, mystery & curiosity.  The actress was a perfect choice in every way.  Just the right amount of stoicism & grace to pull of the perfect faux human.

My complaint is that there is nothing between arrival at the beginning & the moment that was chosen to be the ending.  I do recommend the film because everything else is marvelous.  Obviously, it’s not a great film.  I would say it’s an interesting take on the matter of AI, with elements that are recognizable from previous books & other films.  It does rest on the special effects as its only positive.

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