ACF#27 Ex Machina


Out in theaters this weekend is Alex Garland’s second directorial feature, Annihilation, so the American Cinema Foundation is bringing you a discussion of his directorial feature, Ex Machina, starring Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander, and Domnhall Gleeson, and which earned Garland his first Oscar nomination, for Best Writing Original Screenplay. We talk about everything from the movie’s warning about how we might replay creation, as per Genesis, and get it wrong, being that we’re not God, to the strange way in which sci-fi has become the last place for heroes, for moral stories where we, faced with crisis, retrieve an understanding of our own human nature that helps us make sense of the future.

There are all sorts of things which we have not had a chance to discuss, especially the Hebrew names, all of which seem to be reversed.

Ava is obviously there to stand for Eva. Listen to the podcast–you’ll see what a strange new woman we have on our hands…

Nathan seems to be chosen for the prophet who chastised King David about the sins he committed with the wife of Uriah.

Caleb seems to be chosen for the man Moses sent spying into the promised land, the only adult, except Joshua himself, allowed into the promised land, and promised an inheritance there in the generations.

Peter also mentions other stories where robots/androids/replicants are now made to suffer our fate, that is, face up to our mortality for us. Humans, on Amazon, Westworld, on HBO, whose second season is coming up this spring, and of course, Blade Runner and Blade Runner 2049, which the ACF podcast discussed previously. You can find these latter two below and we’re also looking to do a conversation on Westworld when the time comes…

Also, you can find Peter’s book, From Utopia to Apocalypse–fine title for the mood of the times…–on the sci-fi graphic novels of Alan Moore on Amazon and on BetterWorldBooks.

I also give you one of the outtakes of our prep. Peter and I sometimes discuss Korean cinema and he introduced me to a new commercial comedy, Miss Granny, a narrative of rejuvenation that suggests previous generations were far livelier and more energetic than the young are today. Well, here’s a brief capsule review:

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