Set in a futuristic world where humans live in isolation and interact through surrogate robots, a cop is forced to leave his home for the first time in years in order to investigate the murders of others' surrogates.
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People are living their lives remotely from the safety of their own homes via robotic surrogates -- sexy, physically perfect mechanical representations of themselves. It's an ideal world where crime, pain, fear and consequences don't exist. When the first murder in years jolts this utopia, FBI agent Greer discovers a vast conspiracy behind the surrogate phenomenon and must abandon his own surrogate, risking his life to unravel the mystery. Written by
At the end of the film, mild damage from cars on some (not overly busy) inner city streets is shown, and voice-over newscasters are heard saying that there were zero human casualties. One might think that surrogates operating airplanes, when disconnected, would crash and kill human passengers. Still, there are two reasons this might not be so: first, human populations were seen as subsisting without technology, driving a horse-cart for example. No airplanes are seen in the film, likely because, as Maggie Grier explains, a vacation means operating a long-distance surrogate, not flying (one's surrogate) to a remote location. See more »
Look at yourselves. Unplug from your chairs, get up and look in the mirror. What you see is how God made you. We're not meant to experience the world through a machine.
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It's a great concept. In the future, the Sims style online gaming, where people live vicariously through characters, has evolved to living out real-life, in the real world, via surrogate robots. Everybody stays home all the time, 24/7. They work, play and travel via their surrogates, from the comfort of their home.
I'm not spoiling anything here -- this all happens in the first 5 minutes. The result of this new era of existence is the dramatic drop in violent crimes, sexually transmitted diseases, death by accident, etc.
Well, it's a great concept. And the CGI is good. Because of the plot, every character is insanely pretty, so the screen is filled with beautiful people.
But... it just... doesn't... quite... gel. The whole thing feels like a cool episode of Star Trek, or something on TV. The story is not riveting. I didn't really care about the characters. The timing was off; things either came too late (I was bored, expecting them) or so fast I couldn't really appreciate.
Surrogates lacks that wow-factor.
Example of bad timing: At the start, one wonders, "What do the users really look like? Anything like like their surrogate robots?" I would expect that, at first, we see Bruce Willis, just some facial hair which his robot doesn't have. Then, eventually, we see that he is older than his robot, so he's "cheating" on age too. Even later still, maybe we'd see an obese person at home posing as an athlete via a surrogate which looks nothing like him. Well, "Surrogates" skips all that build up and goes straight for the punchline: within 10 minutes we see a hot chick robot making with a young man; turns out the hot chick is actually slovenly a middle-aged man. Any twists to come later, in this variety, loses all punch.
Worth a rental.
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