A young man and his three younger siblings, who have kept secret the death of their beloved mother in order to remain together, are plagued by a sinister presence in the sprawling manor in which they live.
Sergio G. Sánchez
In a near dystopian high tech future, where everything is sterilized and many feel completely detached, a loyal chief technician in one of the plants, where meat is grown for food from protein strains, decides to grow something else.
Two upper-class teenage girls in suburban Connecticut rekindle their unlikely friendship after years of growing apart. Together, they hatch a plan to solve both of their problems-no matter what the cost.
An ambitious young executive is sent to retrieve his company's CEO from an idyllic but mysterious "wellness center" at a remote location in the Swiss Alps, but soon suspects that the spa's treatments are not what they seem.
Lee Weathers is a "risk-management specialist" for genetic-engineering company SynSect. She arrives at a rural site hosting its L-9 project, an artificial being with nanotechnology-infused synthetic DNA named Morgan. The "hybrid biological organism with the capacity for autonomous decision making and sophisticated emotional responses" is smarter than humans and matures quickly, walking and talking within a month and physically a teenager despite being five years old..
Just a few minutes after being in the lake, Lee's clothes are dry. See more »
Dr. Kathy Grieff:
[enters the holding cell]
Hi, darling. It's me. I thought we'd have lunch together today. Oh, angel, you look sad. You know, it's a very, very natural thing. It's actually a very human thing to feel sad. But emotions aren't bad.
Dr. Kathy Grieff:
I'm sorry, baby. I'm still trying to get them to change their mind and let you out for a little bit.
Dr. Kathy Grieff:
[Morgan suddenly lunges at her and begins stabbing her]
No! Get off! No! Oh, god!
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Not quite the horror I was expecting but still good
Luke Scott, Son of Ridley Scott, give us his feature debut, a sci-fi thriller that has similar elements to Ex Machina, Splice and even Blade Runner. The story is central to genetically created Morgan who is only five years old but displays immense intelligence and emotions beyond teenagers, which comes with violence.
Morgan, superbly played by Anya Taylor-Joy is housed in a confined facility in the middle of nowhere where she's raised by a group of scientists responsible for differences areas of her development like Behavioural Analyst, Amy played by GoT's Rose Leslie and an unrecognisable Boyd Holbrook who's the nutritionist or chef. I couldn't place his face at first but remembered him from Run All Night after looking him up. The team also includes Michelle Yeoh, Toby Jones, Michael Yare, Chris Sullivan, Vinette Robinson and Jennifer Jason Leigh, who all give convincing performances even if only brief.
Something goes wrong and Lee Weathers, played by Kate Mara, a corporate risk assessment manager is sent to do more than just investigate. Taking telephones orders from a Brian Cox who seems to have similar authority as his character in the Bourne saga. There's an eerie sense of conflict amongst everyone and there's even a hint of jealously from Mara's character.
Things go from bad to worse when Paul Giamatti comes to evaluate Morgan's behaviour and the film steps up a gear. Not that it's slow, it's paced very well, introducing each of the characters and then snowballing to the finale before you figure out what's happening. However, I figured it pretty early on, being suspicious of certain characters. If there was meant to be clever twist, it didn't work for me though still a good story and reminded me of Bourne.
There's a moral point here about genetics and human rights though not entirely thought provoking as the film's displays why compassion for Morgan is threw out the window. The finale is great with both Mara and Morgan showing their true colours.
I might be missing something, but could there be a hint at the film Hanna, as there's mention about the Helsinki incident. But there's nothing else to indicate that this is fact. It's very similar indeed, and the end gives away a larger picture.
There's a good score from Max Richter adding to the sinister backdrop of the movie, however I wouldn't as far to say this film is a horror. Eerie, and maybe a little suspenseful perhaps but not scary. It's quite cold, emotionless in parts, but that's possibly deliberate. It's a worthy watch and a great job by Luke Scott but it's not unfamiliar territory and nothing entirely original.
Running Time: 8 The Cast: 8 Performance: 8 Direction: 7 Story: 6 Script: 6 Creativity: 7 Soundtrack: 7 Job Description: 7 The Extra Bonus Points: 5 for being on point for a feature debut. Looking forward to seeing more from Luke.
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