Transcendence

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Having tried his hand at cinematography for director Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy, Wally Pfister directs his first movie with the dramatic Sci-fi thriller, Transcendence. Dr. Will Caster (Johnny Depp), a scientist who is developing a sentient computer, is speaking at a conference when a member of an anti-technology extremist group shoots him with an irradiated bullet. Before he passes away, his friend and fellow scientist Max Waters (Paul Bettany) uploads Will’s consciousness into a super computer. Later with the help of his wife Evelyn (Rebecca Hall), Will’s mind is transferred to the internet. Before long, with the help of Wills mind Evelyn buys a remote California town and builds a massive underground factory that transforms people into high level artificial intelligence. (This town is build faster then most people can build a doghouse) When Will becomes all-powerful, his friends Max, Joseph Tagger (Morgan Freeman), and Bree (Kate Mara) the leader of the terrorist group become allies. This is an intriguing film about artificial intelligence and the power of the human mind. I’m happy this wasn’t a sequel, a reboot, or based on a book, but something fairly new. The audience feels the conflict and sympathy for all of the characters, as they have to make up their minds on supporting their friend or protecting the world. Rebecca Hall was the perfect choice to play the wife and you could feel her conflicting emotions with her husband’s mind. I enjoyed most of this movie but it had its flaws. Why wasn’t the military involved, how did the whole world change in just a couple years, and why was he shot with an irradiated bullet? Without the time to transfer his consciousness to a computer none of the problems would have happened. (Of course there wouldn’t have been a movie either.) I left the movie with questions about the possibility of a sentient computer, which led to interesting discussions. (Having a sentient computer may be like having another wife to disagree with – eek!) Science fiction fans and sci-fi fans will probably enjoy this film and I’m giving it a B- rating.

This movie has been given a PG13 rating by the MPAA