Alex Garland has an extensive history as a screenwriter, crafting scripts for the likes of Sunshine, 28 Days Later, and Dredd, but his directorial debut, the robotics thriller Ex Machina, looks as promising as any of those. Though it won’t premiere in the U.S. for a few more months, a U.K. release waits just around the corner next month, and we reap the benefit of all the advance hype, including this new featurette, “When Humans Become Gods.”
Ex Machina revolves around Caleb Smith (Domhnall Gleeson), a programmer at a Google-like internet search company. When he wins a chance to spend some time at the isolated mountain retreat of the company’s CEO, Nathan Bateman (Oscar Isaac), he thinks they’re going to hang out, bond, and maybe talk about a promotion. As it turns out, however, Caleb has been recruited to be the human component in a Turing Test, designed to evaluate the consciousness of Nathan’s latest invention, an artificially intelligent robot named Ava (Alicia Vikander), who is much more than meets the eye.