What does it mean to create life? That’s the question at the center of artificial intelligence, and its a query that has long fascinated storytellers. Indeed, the notion of a mad scientist cobbling together a creature is nothing new, and writer/director Alex Garland is well aware of this fact, and acknowledges the predecessors to his “Ex Machina.”
“There’s always a Frankenstein element to these creation myths. It’s the text, I suppose, which all of these stories go back to,” he told The Verge. “Also, it’s always the case that in looking at the creation, you inevitably end up looking at the creator. And I suppose it is like Frankenstein inasmuch as [the story itself] has sympathy with the monster. To me, definitely, my allegiances are with Ava. They’re with the machine, not with the humans in the story.”
After opening in the U.K. in January (check out our review which called it “a triumph”), the sci-fi thriller is now making its presence known stateside, stopping at SXSW this week. Starring Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson, and Alicia Vikander, the story follows a lowly programmer who is invited by the mysterious CEO of the company he works for to test out an advanced A.I. And everyone gets much more than they bargained for.
“Ex Machina” arrives on April 10th. Watch below.