2 / 5
CGI / Special Effects are seemingly terrible
Acting for some of the cast seems not polished
Interesting concept played out on the big screen
Recommend to rent this or wait for Netflix to potentially play it, if you really desire to see this
For a theatre to even show this, attests to Keanu’s audience pull. Kudos to him.
Thoughts: * Some Spoilers
The concept of this film is an interesting sci-fi topic, essentially being able to clone human beings then inputting their brain’s existence into a fresh copy. So basically the concept is similar to the basic understanding of the world of the Netflix show “Altered Carbon”. However “Altered Carbon” is a very well polished entertainment showpiece following along similar sci-fi punk world imaginations akin to Blade Runner.
First off, the CGI/ special effects of one robot in this film is so horrendously filmed that it makes me think perhaps it was intentionally made bad? Obviously, there could be budget issues too maybe, although much of the film revolves around very few select locations without many special effects at all. Therefore perhaps the budget ($30 million) was extremely low and/or intentionally the desired effect was the robot to be glitchy as it moved, however it looked like cheap CGI. Nonetheless nice to see the concept of inputting a human consciousness into a machine pulled off in this storyline.
Next to discuss is the plot. It is quite abrupt to have the main protagonist’s family killed off just to get the film main plot concepts going. Nice to see the main protagonist (CEO) of Pied Piper from Silicon Valley and recent Verizon Commercials, starring in a film. Not the best film choice though and no fault to him. The fault goes to the execution of putting this film together as a whole. Either way, the chemistry is not the best between this dude and Keanu Reeves, but much better than Keanu and his family in this film.
The acting of Keanu’s family in this film seemed a bit off, which perhaps was a director choice. Why I say that is because they acted a bit like Keanu. Not knocking on Keanu’s acting at all. That is his signature style. Keanu is Keanu no matter what. However seeing some other actors, that obviously can act differently and outside filming, acting with Keanu mannerisms seemed offputting.
The main antagonist wasn’t that compelling and a bit abrupt too to their introduction, simply to progress the story. Much of this film is actually spent on Keanu ensuring his replicated family has no problems during the cloning process. Then it progresses to him trying to figure out how to make sure their conscious will download to the clone bodies without a hiccup. Obviously, there are some hiccups. Then the wrap up with Keanu telling his clone family that they died and he basically resurrected their consciousness. In the end, Keanu and his family defeat the antagonist and live happy lives. The robot project Keanu was working on is completed, which is basically a clone of Keanu’s consciousness into the robot. The robot now is CEO of the company which was a shell before when it was being run by the antagonist. The robot killed the antagonist, then cloned him, and now he exists basically as a good version of himself, haha. The Silicon Valley / Verizon Commercial dude gets killed, sadly since he actually was quite important to the achievement of cloning a human body. Keanu was the brains though with the algorithms for their project.
All in all, this film is a definite straight to DVD. I can’t even say straight to Netflix really since some Netflix films aren’t bad. As well Netflix understandably would not associate themselves with this film as a Netflix premier film (akin to Annihilation) given they are tapping more into Hollywood big budget films. However, hopefully, this someday may go to Netflix and probably could be licensed for the cheap. Potentially the directors of this film were hoping for a quick cash grab from Netflix to feature this. It is even lucky Theatres display this. Literally one theatre I went to made up an excuse to not film this on opening night. No biggie to me, I went to another theatre, however I understand why they would opt to not premiere the film.
The crazy thing is “Ex Machina” had a budget ($15 million) half of this film. Yet is so much more finely polished and enjoyable. The thought concepts are differing and individually interesting. It is astounding how bad this film is compared to “Ex Machina”. “Ex Machina” is a film that should have been a Netflix premiere film, however obviously the timeline doesn’t match up with what Netflix was capable of back then.
Keanu will be fine with films. He has audience pull and this film won’t derail his career. Looking forward to John Wick 3 and other Keanu films. If the next Keanu film I see is horrendous though I’ll start watching reviews of the films beforehand. I do hope that Thomas Middleditch can get placement into a better put together film. He has his own mannerisms (I believe are an act) that he can pull off, like in Silicon Valley, which means he can act. Alice Eve is a decent actress, granted I haven’t seen much of any of her films though. I just know she can act better than how she did in “Replicas”. Again it is also on the Director and whomever else is involved with selecting the scene acted, and then making things cohesive.
I was not expecting anything going into this film. Keanu is the lead of the film and thus went to enjoy whatever was on screen. I literally didn’t see a single trailer for it. I’m not disappointed but rather confused how a $30 million budget film could mess up this bad a bit. That budget isn’t great however unfairly comparing to the $15 million budget of “Ex Machina”, it shames this film “Replicas”.