8.1/10
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4 user 5 critic

Autofac 

Society and the world as we know it has collapsed. A massive, automatic factory operates according to the principles of consumerism; humans consume to be happy, and in order to consume ... See full summary »

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, (based on the short stories by)
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Cast

Episode credited cast:
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Emily Zabriskie
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Conrad Morrison
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Avishai Hahn
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Reverend Perine
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Lewis
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Susan
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Garret
Desmond Laurent ...
The Watchmen
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Storyline

Society and the world as we know it has collapsed. A massive, automatic factory operates according to the principles of consumerism; humans consume to be happy, and in order to consume continuously, they must be denied freedom of choice and free will. When a small band of rebels decide to shut down the factory, they discover they may actually be the perfect consumers after all. Written by Channel 4

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Sci-Fi

Certificate:

TV-MA

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Details

Release Date:

12 January 2018 (USA)  »

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Soundtracks

PKD Electric Dreams Main Title
Written by Harry David Gregson-Williams
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User Reviews

 
A Very Human Story
14 January 2018 | by See all my reviews

Fans of post-apocalyptic period pieces will find this episode engaging but, I must say, I found it to be a bit more than that. Juno Temple is fantastic as Emily Zabriskie, the female warrior bad ass in a land-locked tribe of survivors trying to stay alive after mankind has pushed the button. They suffer the ever compounding effects of an automated factory run by machine AI that is operating on auto-pilot and has run amok fabricating endless consumer goods, creating pollution and waste that is now encroaching on their camp.

Since they are the only humans left, they must somehow contact and reason with the machines and this is where Janelle Monáe shines as Alice, the seemingly benign AI bot sent to make contact with the camp (more to it than that but I'll subtract the spoilers). Her body language is superb, emulating what one might conjure up if asked to imagine the ambulatory facility of a sentient robot.

What unfolds is, to me, a very touching and human story flecked with the darkness of the idea that human/AI interface will be anything but routine. Juno is crafty in her ability to draw away from the through line enough so that we don't see the clever twist coming and, in the process, leaves the viewer on edge and anticipating what might actually befall us in the near future.

The dialogue between Juno and Janelle toward the climax was what brought about the tears. I don't mind admitting it moved me just a bit insofar as the episode's stark observation of what could be our needed response should the machines start thinking for themselves.

The supporting cast was palatable and served the story well but you don't get all that until the end. Minus one star for a couple of small but glaring holes in the story. However, suspension of disbelief works well here so go with it.

Loved it on the whole.


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