Ex Machina is an amazing sci-fi thriller that uses artificial intelligence as it’s breaking point. The movie is written and directed by Alex Garland and it includes scientific, technologic, mythological and even religious elements. It is a magnificent movie that made on a budget of 15 million dollars and the film grossed 36 million dollars worldwide and won the Best Visual Effects award on 88th Academy Awards commonly called as Oscars. The plot begins simply as programmer Caleb Smith, who works for the dominant search engine company Blue Book which I think is a reference for Google, wins an office contest for a one-week visit to Blue Book’s CEO, Nathan Bateman’s secluded house which the last name of Nathan Bateman is probably inspired from Patrick Bateman in American Psycho. From then on Nathan wants Caleb to apply a Turing test on a humanoid robot named Ava with artificial intelligence. In my opinion the humanoid robot’s name Ava is a religious reference that I will explain later. There are also references for Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, H. G. Wells’ The Island of Doctor Moreau and Prometheus from Greek Mythology.
The most important scientific element in this movie is the use of artificial intelligence and the movie depicts the many aspects of AI and questions the pros and cons of AI. The movie also uses five artificial intelligence references. The first one is being the Turing test which is the test that Nathan tries to evaluate if Ava is capable of exhibiting behavior of a human being. Second one is the Natural Language processing that is used when Ava is communicating. Third one is Singularity which means the robot, computer or a network becoming something that can re-design itself or to create other computers and robots better than itself. Fourth one is Computational Creativity which mean constructing a program that is capable of human level creativity and the fifth one being Multimodal deep learning which makes possible that Ava can understand and analyze human’s emotions and feelings from facial expressions.
Religious reference in the movie is that the robot Ava is a reference to Eve from Christianity because of the ambition of Ava and its sin against her creator. Only difference is that Ava is created by men while Eve is created from men in Christianity, but the concept of sin is still there because she kills her own creator therefore disobeying him and committing sin against her creator, her god.
There is a reference to Prometheus from Greek mythology in Ex Machina because Nathan Bateman created robots with artificial intelligence with technological devices just as Prometheus created humans with matter. Nathan is punished through his liver like the how Prometheus is punished through his liver himself as well.
There are lots of reference to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein because it feels like the same story with all those gothic elements and both the novel Frankenstein and the movie Ex Machina deals with the issue of a fallible god and their continuous battle against their creations. Instead of neck bolts and stitches Ex Machina has technological devices that used on Ava. There is also a reference to H. G. Wells’ The Island of Doctor Moreau because of the similarities on the plot, because Doctor Moreau and Nathan Bateman both lives on secluded places and while Doctor Moreau wants to take medical research beyond what is believed possible without thinking of the moral element, Nathan Bateman wants to take AI technology beyond what is believed possible without thinking of the moral element. Their difference is that Doctor Moreau is genius mad scientist that focuses on medical research to make animal hybrid humans while Bateman is a brilliant coder who uses technology and science to create humanoid robots with artificial intelligence, but their motives, morals and ideals are basically the same.
To conclude, Ex Machina is a marvelous sci-fi movie that uses scientific elements, technology, religion, mythology and literature to deliver its message and the films idea perfectly that leaves the audience in shock and awe with its brilliant plot.
Ex Machina Ex Machina is an amazing sci-fi thriller that uses artificial intelligence as it’s breaking point