This is a tough movie to review because there’s so much to unpack.
Sad by probably true
With all of the recent advancements in AI/Machine Learning (ML) it really feels that stories like this are moving from science fiction to this shit is about to get real. Robots and AI aren’t something that are over the horizon anymore. It’s here right now. How do you know that the article you’re reading right now isn’t written by ML? You don’t, because ML is writing stuff like this millions of times a day.
There’s no way of knowing how things will turn out, but The Creator feels like it could be very real. The robots/AI are caring, loving, spiritual and the humans are the violent killing machines. Yep, I can definitely see that happening. Robots will take jobs, and people will react violently. Accidents will happen and robots will inevitably be falsely blamed. About the only scenario that could play out where humans don’t end up as the bad guys is the Skynet/Ultron scenario where an AI goes complete psychopath and tries to wipe out humanity.
I’ve seen enough of the bad side of humanity already to say that I’m on Team Robot until proven wrong.
This movie gets a 10/10 for creating a newish scenario about how the humans/AI battle will evolve.
I absolutely love the contrast provided in this movie. We have super high-tech cities and machines next to rice paddies that are still planted by hand. Again, that’s something I think is more realistic than not. We’re going to have amazing technology, but it won’t be everywhere. Some places, and some jobs, are likely to be done the same as they were 1,000 years ago.
From top to bottom, the acting is fantastic in every scene. The primary cast deserves many kudos. The young girl Madeleine Yuna Voyles as Alphie is amazing. I hope we get to see her in a lot more soon. One of the best child performances I’ve seen in a long time. John David Washington was a perfect choice to play the troubled protagonist. Ken Watanabe was delightful as ever and I thought it was really interesting to cast Allison Janney as the cold-blooded Colonel. That’s a totally different role from her previous work and she was great.
What really stood out to me was the performances by the supporting actors. There are a few actors that make the most out of very little screen time. Veronica Ngo as the simulation Kami had just a few scenes, but was memorable. Amar Chadha-Patel played the wordless Omni perfectly. His expressions said everything about his character. The actors who played the soldiers along with Joshua (JDW) were all spot-on in every scene they had, and there were some really dramatic scenes.
Any time the overall acting in a movie is at this high of a level I feel that the director deserves a lot of the credit for putting the actors in situations to succeed. You can totally see that this is a Gareth Edwards movie. He also did Godzilla, Monsters, and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. I’m shocked at the IMDb ratings for Godzilla, Monsters are so low: 6.4 each. I think they are way better than that and I can’t wait to see what Gareth does next.
I feel that Gareth Edwards made a conscious choice to place a lot of the battles and destruction in picturesque settings. While you’re watching humans hunting down robots you’re also seeing the destruction of beautiful pastoral land that further enhances the injustice. It’s really something to see peaceful views of mountains or farmland as bullets and missiles fly.
I like it, but I don’t love it. What I like is setting the Americans up as the villains while the robots and Asians are the sympathetic victims. I’m totally on board with that much because this just feels all too real from an American exceptionalism standpoint. We’d totally be the ones to screw this up.
There are some nuances with the story that I’m not crazy about. There’s nothing egregious, but I feel that a few more drafts of the screenplay could have turned this into an instant classic.
About The Peetimes: This wasn’t an easy movie to find Peetimes for. I managed to pick out 3 that I think work as well as anything could. The 1st Peetime is the best. The 2nd isn’t bad, but it’s not very long and a poignant scene follows. The 3rd will do, but there’s a big buildup to an action scene.
|Rated:||(PG-13) Strong Language | Some Bloody Images | Violence|
|Genres:||Action, Adventure, Drama|
|Starring:||John David Washington, Madeleine Yuna Voyles, Gemma Chan|
|Writer(s):||Gareth Edwards, Chris Weitz|
Described as a post-apocalyptic thriller involving a future impacted by a war between humans and AI.
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Creator and developer of the RunPee app. When something doesn’t work right in the app it’s pretty much his fault. 🙂
Aspiring author. Would like to finish his “Zombie Revelations” trilogy if he could break away for working on RunPee and the cottage he’s building for RunPee Mom.