I Am Mother (2019) Poster


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No one noticed?! The women from outside is actually...
daniel-336838 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
The biggest plot twist which would explain the entire movie is given out right in the beginning and verified multiple times throughout, then again at the ending.

  • The '13867 days since extinction event' in the opening sequence indicates 38 years have past. Yet the daughter shown was only a teenager. That's because the women from outside was the 1st daughter ever... let me exlpain:
  • During the middle of the film when the current daughter takes the exam + discovers that the robot mother had lied and killed 'failed' children before, it shows that her label is APX03, and APX02 have failed (incinerated), but 3 embryos were used from the lab... get it?
  • The women from outside was APX01, the first "daughter", she matches the 38 years old timeline. Remember the robot said to her in the end "wonder why you survived this long out here as if someone had a purpose for you? Until now" Because she is the ultimate test to see if APX03 is truly ready to take on the role as mother for a new generation of humans (she returned hence passed the test so the robot left her alone). The women's memory was clearly altered/erased, that's why she totally couldn't respond when the robot said "Tell me... Do you remember your mother?"

Some more details... 1. The women sunk into a state of confusion when she saw the tonight show playing, and said she used to watch it a long time ago - her vague memories from living in the facility. She would never have seen it if she was out there for the whole 38 years. (Due to the end of civilization) 2. The women was meant to find the facility at that moment, everything was planned, including the bio suit, which obviously didn't need to exist otherwise. 3. This is speculation, but the women's artistic abilities might've been her training as a child. Remember the current daughter started prcating dancing since a young age? The robot recognized the importance of art and tries to incorporate that into each daughter's education.

I created this account cuz I couldn't stand how many morons are saying negative things about the movie... including critics, sadly.
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Even the title is misleading. Brilliant.
skyshops10 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
I cannot say anything else that has not been said yet about the plot. Yes, the Woman (Hilary Swank) is APX01, yes the daughter (Clara Rugaard) is APX03 and APX02 was killed by the droid. Yes, I say droid because even though Daughter called the droid Mother, the title clearly states that the real mother is the one being prepared for motherhood by the droid, the Daughter. Hence the title « I am Mother », the last scene shows Daughter being the Mother of the new mankind, she has been raised to become the real Mother. That's why somewhere in the beginning, when the first child asked the droid about why her brothers and sisters could not be created at once, the droid answers that ´Mothers need time to learn', i.e. the child needs to be up to standard and pass the test before the others can be 'born'. This movie is a gem and definitely asks to be watched twice. Netflix did it right this time.
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People mistake hint for an error (13867 days)
lessermagic8 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
A lot of folks here say that Daughter should be 38 years old, so the "13867 days passed since extinction event" was an error. It was not. The woman (played by Hilary Swank) was in fact the first child brought up by Mother. Daughter was APX03, the remains in the incinerator was APX02, the woman was APX01.
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Don't trust the bad reviews! They didn't understand the movie
thoriumop8 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers

First I'll address some of the bad reviews and then I'll write a general review with some side-rant :)

The people who rated the movie poorly seem to have either not watched the film or lack some sort of basic intelligence. Most of the plot holes, issues or thing that "wouldn't happen" we're justified/justifyable. One person said that the robot was too dumb in the film and that real AI wouldn't be that dumb. Clearly that person failed to realize that everything that happened was the robot's intent. So if everything worked as the robot had intended, how does that make the robot dumb? The robot literally said to the woman in the shipping crate that she no longer served a purpose to her (the robot). As I was watching the film, I figured one of the scenarios was that the whole thing was a test for the girl and that in the end the girl passed. The robot's ultimate objective is to create a better human, one with ethical, moral, psychological and emotional superiority.

General Review: The movie is quite a good sci-fi movie. As a massive sci-fi fan myself and as an Aeronautical Engineer (specifically space related), I am both educated on some of the things presented in the film and interested in what is presented in the film. Obviously some of the things in the film are indeed science fiction, but nothing in the movie that I saw was impossible (great movies skate the line between fiction and reality, makes it more believeable). From start to finish, you, the viewer, are constantly debating who to trust, the robot or the human. The writers did a good job and allow the viewer to be warmed up to the robot and present the more human side of the robot. I think this is critical in helping develop the story because you need to trust the robot and if the film went straight into the action you wouldn't trust the robot at all. So after a brief introduction I'd say that as a viewer, myself, I was about 50/50. This lays the ground for the rest of the film. So as your human side and logical side battle , the movie continues to provide information that keeps you conflicted. As the movie goes deeper you begin to piece things together and the picture becomes more clear. At this point, where things click, you are beginning to see the moral dilemma (similar to the one provided in the film, now writing this and fully realizing, the film goes from a 9 star to 10). The human race is the dilemma. You have two choices. You can choose to not wipe out humanity and humans will continue to suffer or you can wipe out humanity and build a better human kind so that there is a greater benefit in the long run (think thousands of years, also related to Utilitarianism and lots of other ethical shizz). For example (similar to the film's logic), imagine 8 billion people in current times (somewhat discontent) vs. 8 billion people who are smarter, more ethical, more kind, more rational, etc... That would be a damn good world. This is the dilemma the audience arrives at as the film reaches it's climax. The robot is trying to build a better world at the cost of the old world. Is this ethical (there is no "right" answer)? The fact that they included the robot teaching the girl ethics confirms this idea. I thought it was strange that the robot was teaching this girl (presuming the character is supposed to be a teenager, but the actor is 21) such detailed ethics at a young age. In the film they mentioned Kantian ethics and such. Anyways, the whole idea of the film is sort of like arguing whether or not Thanos is a bad guy. From many ethical perspectives you can say that Thanos is actually in the right and from just as many ethical perspectives you can say the Avengers are the good guys. There honestly is no wrong answer, in my opinion. That's why I think this film was such a great film because it was so much more than a surface-level sci-fi film. All of the people who rated the movie bad didn't understand the underlying point of the film. These people just want a lazy movie that tells them what to think. I love movies that allow you to think for yourself and actually force you to do just that. The movie says (not literally): "create your own ideas", which is important in a society where people are constantly telling you how to think.
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Such an underrated piece of Sci-Fi!
The reviews I read only gave me the impression that this would be a decent thriller, not...this. After watching one generic blockbuster after another, it's always so nice to see small, creative films like I Am Mother are still getting made. I'm really curious about how much did this film cost, because it looks really impressive, but I also have the feeling that it has a very small budget. This films has solid acting and interesting characters, it touches on complicated ideas with a tightly paced narrative from start to finish and managed to keep me on the edge of my sit till the very end. If you love to treat yourself with some great science fiction, I highly recommend I Am Mother.
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Definitely worth watching.
mwelliott997 June 2019
More 'Moon' than 'Terminator' but I love both those films so that's fine. It isn't a big special effects (yawn) film which is a big plus. An interesting story with similarities with others you've seen but different enough and with some twists. You care about the characters and it's quite gripping. I enjoyed it and recommend it.
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A familiar formula, well executed.
lynsieharris2 February 2019
Fans of Ex Machina and other cerebral sci-fi movies will find another favorite here. The lead actress makes a stunning debut and carries the film, with Hilary Swank in a supporting role. The film constantly has you changing allegiances, unsure of who to trust. The finale is super satisfying.

For the commenter wondering why there are reviews already, I Am Mother premiered at Sundance and has probably been viewed by at least ~1,000 people by this point- myself included.
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A visually impressive Sci-fi thriller
XxxDaniel947 June 2019
I am Mother is a gorgeous looking movie, there was times where I couldn't tell if I was seeing CGI or particle effects, which just goes to show, that you don't need a big budget to make a movie like this.

Without spoiling the movie, I am Mother takes place within a facility, and for most of the movie, you follow a young woman as she is raised by a highly intelligent AI. Now a movie like this can get boring, but like movies such as Ex Machina, I am Mother always keeps you interested. While some may find the film boring due to its slow plot, those who enjoy good sci-fi thrillers that are slow burners, will find a great deal of enjoyment from this film.

The main lead, played by Clara Rugaard, gives a brilliant performance. And considering that she is unknown, and going head to head with a powerhouse like Hilary Swank, shows how much of a talented young actress that she is. The robot voiced by Rose Byrne is the highlight of the movie, as it is very difficult during most of the movie, to try and understand if it means bad or good, and that is due to the clever writing and directing.

I am Mother is a very entertaining movie, and many will love it if they enjoy movies like it, but many more may find it boring. But the production design, the visuals, directing and acting is spot on, and is by far one of the best Netflix movies.

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Think beyond.
danieltarkka7 June 2019
This is an great example of the fact that you don't need 3000 cool robot's or spaceships to make an excellent sci-fi movie. I like the fact that you need to use your own imagination of what it could be. The handling isn't anything groundbreaking. But I myself will defenitly think about it for a couple of day's.
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They should have issued a credit or at least a special thank you to Isaac Asimov
isaacroccoco8 June 2019
Many people are familiar with Isaac Asimov's three laws of robotics. But far fewer are aware that in one of the sequel books extending and tying together the robot series, the Elijah Baily books, and the Foundation series that he added one more law - The Zeroth Law. And that is exactly what this movie is about.

Good movie. I enjoyed it.
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Stunning psychological sci-fi thriller. My Observations, fact finding and some thoughts.
kanter-3578711 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
First of al, I'd like to start as other reviewers have that are leaving positive ratings; if your not looking to think, or want to digest an easy to handle sci-fi action flick, then this movie is not for you, or not for you at that time.

If you like critical thinking, questions surrounding borderline ethical choices, a visceral slow-burn sci-fi with a meaningful and thought provoking message that contains pleasing visuals (so much attention to details) and a well placed soundtrack then look no further.


Yes, this movie is designed to make you think and wonder if humanity would be better off starting over with a "hard reboot." Man creates AI. AI surpasses man in every way, literally becomes "the creator and the destroyer," and attempts to reboot mankind by starting over from scratch. The idea itself is not new to the genre, but the story, characters, acting and dialog are done extremely well. This movie sucks you in and keeps you vested until the very end, and dare I say wanting more (which is a good thing). It is delivered in a way not many others have accomplished before. Thought provoking on par with Kubrick, Nolan, and the directors that gave you Encino Man.

It has been mentioned far too many times in other reviews that there are plot holes that are left open, opportunities missed, and sometimes simple mistakes overlooked. I say that the beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and that common sense isn't always so common. From memory of watching the movies just two hours ago, I can only think of 2, maybe 3 instances where the information is left too ambiguous and we have to assume for ourselves. I believe everything else is explained. Let me make some points, and hopefully get those that came here for answers, to get their creative thinking juices flowing. -----------------------------------------

If you're still with me then I am going to assume that you have watched the movie. Some of these will be short, but if you have watched you will know what I mean. I will try my best to stay in chronological order of the movie and point out some of the less obvious stuff (some of this has been covered in other reviews, some not as of yet).

--Everything was planned. From the childhood training, surgical training, finding out the truth about the bullet pulled from the woman, how the woman was shot by "other droids", the food given to the woman in the hospital bed ("comfort food".... not healthy. We're talking mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, okay...some peas), etc.All meticulously planned by Mother. Time has no meaning when you don't age.

--Of course the hazmat suit was a plant, it was intentionally left there.

--Allowing daughter to open the door for a human who was injured, prior to daughter knowing that there was no virus; thus sacrificing herself and her safety to help others in need. Test, passed. Refer back to the ethical questions during the doctor test.

--The surgery is a final test on how well daughter can perform as a doctor. Daughter passed.

--lying about the virus and when and how she finds out about the virus, set-up for test... ...telling daughter she lied for the greater good (about the virus) and they way that she found out, test. Mother wanted to know how she would process that information and if she would make the correct ethical choice to help those in need; using logic,reasoning, empathy AND compassion above impulsive choices to just close the door and walk away. Passed.

--The mines and the talk about the mines. I believe this is one of only a few issues that are ambiguous and may have been slightly overlooked...The mines... 2 theories. a) If you watch again, I believe that there were more embryos missing than just 3. Mother planted the mine as a social experiment, leading ax01 to them.... a social group experiment for a group setting, and how they would react if a newcomer showed up and what they would do to survive, or b) the mines never happened. Made up memories due to ptsd, extreme psychological distress and extreme isolation. Woman was cray cray after being out on her own and "hunted" for years.... bringing us to: ax01 was never "let go" or escaped. She was allowed to leave so mother could record what she would do, and this was her (Ax01) test... failed.

-- Letting daughter leave, after seeing and finding out that she (ax03) has been "aborted". Also a test; referring back to her lesson about making the correct choice in the situation where daughter is the doctor and healthy, but is the only one who has compatible organs for the other 5 humans.... would she sacrifice herself for the survival of the others? Yes, letting daughter believe she would be killed if she came back (or stayed) was planted. The test was to see if she would sacrifice herself for the greater good of saving the others (brother and embryos) at the cost of her own life. She came back thus passing that test. ---- I'll admit... woman putting a knife to daughter's throat could not have been planned; i think this is one of those situations where we are left to rationalize that mother had thought of this scenario, and deduced that if she let them both go unharmed that woman would not intentionally harm daughter.

-- For Ax01? Entire life up until the end was a test. The woman may have failed to be the next mother, but how would she fair out in the world on her own? How would she react to mother, whom when (re)introduced to woman showed nothing but compassion... but was subjected to (perceived) violent AI for a long period of time? Woman was given the chance to not only survive but thrive in the bunker. Test failed (by Ax01). Her lasting hatred and unwillingness to change led to her ultimate demise. With daughter passing the tests and ax01 failing her last test, the experiment was concluded. As mother said, "it's as if you have been able to survive alone for so long for a reason, as if someone had a higher purpose for you." Well that purpose has been fulfilled now that ax01 has proven that she overwhelmingly failed.

--The figures drawn by ax01? Drawings of religious figures, more than likely from a religious book planted by mother (ambiguous again, more than likely Catholic Christian book). What would ax01 do if she found religion, would she hate AI even more and buy in religious ideologies? And the drawings names? Simon (saint)... can't remember other names right now but they were saints as well; the names of these saints come from a religion and were based from a nurturing god, not a wrathful god.

--Leaving the droid hand out? Test. Will daughter do what is necessary to find the truth, given more than one option? When posed with an ethical grey area, would she bend the rules, choose the lesser of two evils (use hand and break in, or blindly follow claims from an external source with no factual evidence?). Test for: "given the situation, which option is more ethical?" Finding the truth was the correct answer.

--Mother letting daughter shoot her? Closure, but with a simple reminder letting her know that she will always be around ( in a super nice "if you need me you know where...." kinda way. Plus, daughter has no idea that mother has, and can record everything. Mothers bunker shell doesn't matter what-so ever but psychologically provides closure for daughter, letting her think that mother is on the " outside" no longer interfering.

-- The last test is to see how she will raise the embryos with all of her life training and given the fact that she knows mother (assumed so, this was never given how the race actually became extinct) killed the race and why she did, but raised her to be the second coming and a fully devoted mother, how will she manage with this knowledge? With acceptance and willingness, or with revenge and hatred? Remember, mother will always be there, watching and waiting. Test - not yet completed.

--Logic, reason, compassion, ethics and morality (the greater good), deduction, ability to make clear choices under extreme stress. This whole movie from the time we arrive at her current age was the final test. Technically daughter is still taking the final "test".

Bonus food for thought:

-- Ax01 life experiences? Wrathful god. AX03? Nurturing god, which works best for the survival of the human race? Nurturing - passed by mother; remember she said that AX03 and this "test" was as much as a test of her abilities as it was for daughter.

--I'll admit ax02's demise is a bit ambiguous, but I find it very hard to believe that ax02 was killed for not passing some tests and furthermore, I believe that this director (and movie) are far too intelligent to miss an oversight / plot hole as large as the adult human jawbone left in the incinerator. I am willing to venture that the bone was planted like everything else. You really think of all the bones in a human body, the jaw bone would not be destroyed AND somehow fall behind the incinerator table? Ambiguous and highly doubtful, but possible.

-- One of the only other things I think we are left to guess is that the fine art that mother had ad01 focus on was drawing / artist... daughter was dancer. Both forms of art but in different expressions ushering different feelings and emotions.
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I think a lot of people are confused
e_rouse8 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
I enjoyed this movie. The second half does feel a little rushed and they didn't need all the action to make it thrilling.

I've read some reviews calling out the timeline. They say according to the dates given daughter would be 38 years old. This would be true if she was the first embryo. But as it's relieved later she is not. But Hilary swank on the other hand could very possibly be 38 which is hinted at the end by Mother saying "do you remember your mother?" As to people complaining about wondering how Hilary swank survived its simple, mother made it so. If Mother had this whole thing planned out from day one then of course she made it possible for Hilary to survive on the outside probably in ways that were not obvious to her at the time.

This movie did leave me wanting more. I would love to know how daughter takes on her new role as mother and what becomes of the new world!!

The reason for the 8/10 is mostly for the second half. The actors were amazing and the overall idea was worth the watch.
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WOW, an outstanding genius Australian novice filmmakers sci-fi that's way to underrated.
TheTopDawgCritic9 June 2019
This film is one of those rare gems that keeps you thinking well after it's over to the point it needs to be seen again - which I did, and now enjoy it that much more.

The rating is way too low, and I can understand why. Right at the end, you're left unsatisfied and thinking there were too many plot issues etc. But man did this film leave me thinking for a few days, and then I saw it again - and everything fell into place. Wow, did I miss a lot!

The top reviewer "No one noticed?! The women from outside is actually..." nailed it. And after I saw it the 2nd time, I felt the writing was brilliant!

For starters, the directing by Grant Sputore (his first ever full length feature film - only 5 prior credits for TV series and a short) was outstanding! Better than some seasoned Hollywood directors. Cinematography was excellent and the sets and S/VFX were perfection. Sputore's and (again, novice) Michael Lloyd Green's writing was brilliant!

You basically have 3 main actors throughout the 115 min films length, that create a story that fills every minute with suspense and drama. Midway, you can't decide who the antagonist is. The plot twists are well placed and executed.

The pacing was decent, but I really did want more story - perhaps an extra 10-15 mins to be able to tie up the loose ends without having to see the film a second time, and that's the only reason I'm not giving this film a perfect 10/10. But again, this gem is not a big budget Hollywood production by seasoned filmmakers, so mad props to Michael Lloyd Green and especially Grant Sputore, who I feel is the next Christopher Nolan!

The score was absolutely perfect and well placed. Very Nolan-esque! The casting was excellent - Clara Rugaard was perfect and Hilary Swank nailed her role to confuse the viewer who to cheer for.

I really suggest anyone who sees this and is left unsatisfied, watch it again and pay close attention to the details (e.g. timestamps, embryos labels, even Woman holding the cross, etc), and you will then see the brilliance of this highly underrated film.

I really hope a part 2 comes out, as this film certainly needs and deserves a sequel - and prequel! A really well deserved 9/10 from me! And if anyone thinks this review is fake, click on my username to see my 1000+ ratings and 600+ reviews. Now go see this film - again!
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Who will you trust?
eelen-seth4 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
In I Am Mother, we find ourselves in a dystopian worlds where all human life has been wiped out. It's Day 1 and Daughter (Clara Rugaard) is born from a frozen embryo. 6,000 days later, she's a young woman taking personality exams and is training to be a doctor. A robot (made by the amazing Weta Workshop) voiced by Rose Byrne is her Mother. She can show a wide range of believable emotions and can move just like humans do.

The production design is the film's highest selling points, with its Apple-ish slickness. Its scenario isn't that groundbreaking, but it's the way it's executed that makes this an interesting watch. At some point, Daughter goes on a little stroll through the big bunker and decides to open the locked vault doors out of curiosity. She hears cries for help and a lost Woman (Hilary Swank) seems to have been shot and in need of care. Daughter lets her in, and soon finds out she doesn't really like droids, in a violent show-off. Daughter finds herself caught in the middle of two worlds - will she stay loyal to her protector or is she too intrigued by the unknown and ready to throw everything she knows overboard?

Science-fiction has never looked more slick and that's mainly because of Mother. The attention to detail is praiseworthy, as is its sound design. You can't help but look at every corner just to see something new and innovative. Even the make up department deserves a high five. Clara Rugaard who plays Daughter, outshines Hilary Swank with ease. Her acting seems effortless and natural, reminiscent of Hailee Steinfeld.

I Am Mother is mostly about what it means to be good. It tries to show us how AI might try to understand kindness in a world where people only seem to want more and push themselves into extinction. Swank's character tries to make Daughter question herself and her beliefs and shows just how powerful an outsider can be that gives you another look at life. The film is also about parenting and how every parent can fail at what they think is best for their child.

Australian director Grant Sputore's debut film gives us a dramatised look at humans and our love-hate relationship with artificial intelligence. Its thriller aspect on a mysterious apocalyptic event makes it all the more interesting, when figuring out what Mother's actual intentions are.

Review by Seth Eelen
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A great movie !
hitman69367 June 2019
It was an original syfy story. I enjoyed it ! A good netflix movie, it's very rare !
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Its like a cristal
dokky-272257 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
"Did you remember your own mother?

Curious isn't it?" That's the moment you realize she was part of Mother's plan

The whole thing was planned every moment every step ...

Brilliant movie
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Great thinking movie.
zacorem8 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
If you are simple minded, you probably won't understand my review. The movie does a great job at fixing the "plot holes". It makes you think.

Like mentioned in another review, the woman was the first born, 38 years old. She left and didnt come back, probably had her memory wiped. She said she watched the tonight show a long time ago, which wouldn't be possible otherwise.

The 2nd was killed off by Mother early in her life for not being smart enough.

Mother let daughter kill her "shell" probably as some kind of coping for letting go. Mother still lives on in other droids. Mother believes daughter is now capable of restarting the human race, because she came back to protect her brother.
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A True Sci-Fi Original
bmaughan-5146430 January 2019
The sets, the effects, the performances all come together in a truly great way. It's one of those movies with a small scale set and limited cast that puts the focus on these character relationships. It does not play out the way you would think. It makes you think about big ideas. I loved it.
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Did mother achieve her goal?
peterbhalliden10 June 2019
This is a thinking film. You need to watch carefully to see Mother's true purpose. It is brilliant. Mother is going to be add to the list of all time great quietly psychological AIs, along with HAL. Her all consuming goal, to her, justifies everything she does. The question you have to ask yourself at the end is, did she achieve it?
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Something that went unnoticed for many
arturmassbdm15 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
About the first woman, we already got a lot of reviews, but, something went unnoticed. On the study of the 3rd daughter, Mother do an exercise for the 3rd daughter (that exercise about saving 5 lives or 1 life), a clearly exercise about utilistarism, the third daughter even quotes explicitly Bentham.. Bentham was the "tutor" of John Stuart Mill (like Bentham,a utilistarist). My consideration is that Mother is utilitarist, thats why she decimated the humanity. The basic principle of Bentham utilitarianism is that we should maximize pleasure and reduce pain. By this way, its fair enough eliminate the humanity to get a bigger pleasure in the future. For me, I think this movie is also about the utilitarian perspective and its problem about the inviolability of the human body.

(English isnt my native language, so maybe I wrote something wrong or anything like that, anyway, I think everyone can undestand what I wrote)
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A Masterpiece
gideonzack8 June 2019
This film is true science fiction. Forget all the dead bodies and crazy action, this could happen. What is humanity? What is a mother? What is going to happen to humanity? What is good and what is evil? A true gem. I need to rewatch this again because there's a lot to digest. Enjoy!!
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FINALLY Netflix has a good sci-fi movie!
lspencer-3679110 June 2019
Great acting, great script, and an engaging story.
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Way better then I thought
imjustdenis7 June 2019
A movie you need to watch, and make your own decisions about what you think of it. I were entertained through the whole movie, yes there are things you don't get the answer to, but do you really need, the answer? Or is it better left for you to think about what could or couldn't happen.
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AMAZING!! Watch it twice it gets even better!
brtnbd10 June 2019
This movie was so good, it's driving me crazy to see any negative reviews about it because they just didn't watch it close enough to catch all the clues. Watch it once and watch it again if you didn't catch everything. Also watch it again before you read any spoilers!!
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Terminator would be proud
metahumanity_0110 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Excellent little scifi drama with very good performances. The little twist in the end, despite being predictable if you pay attention to a few scenes (look at the numbering on the embryos and count the days), makes this a smart and very contained story.

If you liked Moon, Terminator, Ex Machina and the like you will love this.
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