Ex Machina

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Resource Pack for: Ex Machina , directed by Alex Garland

Created by Rachel Holland

Context

The film Ex Machina , directed by Alex Garland and released in 2015, is one of the most recent science fiction thriller films in a long tradition of Artificial Intelligence immortalised on screen. It carries on the stories and questions raised in previous films such as 1982’s Blade Runner , 1984’s The Terminator , 2001’s A.I. Artificial Intelligence , 2004’s i , Robot , and 2013’s Her. What all of these films have in common is their blending of humanity with artificial intelligence , and their questioning of the boundaries of humanity and how easily these might be erased or overridden by artificial intelligence, given the chance. What these films also share is the weaponisation of artificial intelligence, usually by the AI itself, as a method of self-preservation (by the AI in a human world).

These films are all part of a larger tradition in science fiction texts, including short stories, novels, short films, and poetry, which exploded as a genre thanks to Isaac Asimov, writer of seminal texts such as the Foundation series, The Robot series, and short story collections such as I, Robot and The Edge of Tomorrow . Many of Asimov’s written works have spawned on-screen remakes or reinventions, due to his methodical and scientific approach to artificial intelligence’s origins, production, use, and potential futures.

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