Starring Caity Lotz, Denis Lawson and Toby Stephens
I love this film. It’s anchored by a particularly impressive performance by Lotz, in two different parts.
The basic plot is that Vincent, (Stephens) is a highly regarded scientist bringing up a daughter suffering from a degenerative illness. He hires Ava (Lotz) after reviewing her work on artificial intelligence. Ava develops a little too much curiosity about the research the lab is doing on wounded soldiers, and the boss of the facility Thomas (Lawson) hires a man to kill her.
Vincent persuades Thomas to allow him to download Ava’s consciousness into the programme that she had been working on, and create the Machine of the title. This shift gives Lotz the opportunity to show off her evident physical abilities, as the Machine is pushed into becoming a weapon by Thomas.
The Machine struggles, as she becomes more and more empathetic, Ava’s influence somehow elevating her, just as her contact with Vincent does. Thomas blackmails Vincent into making The Machine back into the emotionless weapon that Thomas wants her to be, using Vincent’s daughter’s brain scans as leverage.
The stunts are impressive, particularly those performed by Lotz, I didn’t see that much difference between those that she performs in the film, and her stunt work in Arrow. Clip of a fight scene featuring Lotz
The performances are all good, but I have to say that it’s Lotz that I particularly remember. There’s something extraordinary about her work in the film, more so when she shifts into the role of The Machine, her performance making the Machine somehow more endearing and human than the character of Thomas.
There are several moments where The Machine’s childlike innocence broke my heart, but the one when she is on the verge of having her consciousness removed in a bid to save Vincent’s daughter, still sticks in my memory.
If you are looking for a smart science fiction/ thriller then this one is definitely something that you should watch.
I’d give it a easy 4 out of 5