One of the taglines of the film (see poster above) states: ‘What happens to me if I fail your test? The test in question is the so-called Turing test invented by Alan Turing. Last year the movie ‘The Imitation Game’ handled the life, trials and tribulations of Turing’s life. The test basically tries to determine via a set of questions if one of the participants in a conversation is a human being or a machine who can mimic human like responses.
Ridley Scott’s film ‘Blade Runner’ opens with a Turing test gone bad. Other films dealing with the philosophy surrounding Artifical Intelligence, such as Stanley Kubrick’s ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ and its H.A.L. 9000 ‘character’ and Spielberg’s ‘ A.I.’ (initially also a Kubrick project Spielberg got to make after Kubrick passed away) are using ideas derived from Turing’s writings.
In the film Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson, son of Brendan), after ‘winning’ a competition, is invited by Nathan (Oscar Isaac in yet another high quality product and great as always) -an IT guru- to his remote resort were he is to perform an objective Turing test on AVA. AVA is an A.I. robot with the delightful shape of Alicia Vikander. As Nathan is its creator (the Deus missing from the title), he can not perform it himself. It would be a shame to reveal more of the plot.
If you’re expecting a sci-fi action flick you will more than likely get disappointed as Alex Garland -writer and/or producer on several Danny Boyle films including ‘Sunshine’ and ’28 Days Later’, and the underestimated (Judge) ‘Dredd’ remake- made more of a huis clos psychological drama. Who is really pulling the strings?
Universal Pictures is having a financial miracle year with ‘Jurassic World’, ‘Furious 7’, ‘Minions’, ‘Pitch Perfect 2′, Fifty Shades of Grey’ and the surprise hit ‘Straight Outta Compton’, yet in Belgium they’ve deprived us from a theatrical release of Michael Mann’s ‘Blackhat’ and ‘Ex Machina’. Sad.