Director: Garth Davis
When I first watched the trailer for FOE, I wasn’t exactly sure what kind of movie I was getting into. After looking at the genres of this movie, I was intrigued. A movie about A.I. and romance? It was an interesting combo that I was excited to see. Overall, I have to say that the movie was quite compelling, and it was a fun watch.
Right from the beginning of the movie, an interesting premise is set up. A.I. beings replace humans who are busy with other tasks. These A.I. beings are able to gain consciousness and act human. After seeing the initial scrawl, I was constantly looking for the A.I. being. And I have to say, it was quite difficult to tell until the end. Because of this fact, I was hooked on the movie right from the beginning. After this point, there will be spoilers ahead, so continue reading at your discretion.
So, to start, let’s talk about the characters. Three characters are on screen most of the time: Henrietta, also known as Hen, Junior, and Terrance. Starting with Hen, as a female lead, I was quite satisfied with her acting and character. As a character, I enjoyed her role in the story. Being the wife of Junior, seeing her slowly open up throughout the movie was great. I think what I enjoyed most about her character was that the change was quite subtle. From the beginning of the movie, the relationship between Hen and Junior was quite tense. It was surprising to me that the two were married.
However, as the movie progressed, I saw Hen open herself up a bit more, evident through her piano playing. These small moments made the journey to find the A.I. being worth the wait. Equally so, I enjoyed Junior’s character as well. He also had many small moments that made me happy. When Junior started appreciating Hen’s piano playing and his thoughtful conversations were moments that were great to watch until the end.
Now, the final character, Terrance, was probably the most intriguing of the three. Right from the beginning of the movie, he was a character with a mysterious background. Being from a company that has even more power than the government, there was a lot about his character that I still don’t know. Throughout the movie, I could tell that he was hiding something. And even after the ending, Terrance was still a mysterious character. Although he was a mysterious person, the way he acted around Hen and Junior was surprisingly satisfying. In a way, it felt like he belonged to their little family, in some weird and twisted way.
Besides the characters, the biggest thing about this movie was the plot, and man it was quite intriguing all the way to the end. Now, the most important part of the movie is the reveal at the end. Because of the reveal, everything before and after the reveal makes more sense. If you haven’t seen the movie, this is your last chance before I spoil the biggest part of the movie.
When we find out that Junior is the replacement for the real Junior who went to space, everything about the movie clicked into place. As I mentioned before, the relationship between Junior and Hen was strained at the beginning, which confused me. However, after finding out that the spark between Hen and the real Junior fizzled out a long time ago, it made all the more sense.
At the beginning of the movie, it seemed like Hen knew about Terrance long before he showed up, which the fake Junior picked up on right away. However, Hen was able to divert the conversation and we never got to explore that point. This makes sense in hindsight since Hen really did know Terrance before he showed up at their door. But the really interesting part about Junior being the fake was watching his development.
Through the movie, we learn that the original Junior hated Hen’s piano playing, as it reminded him of what they lost. But before the reveal, watching Junior slowly open up and enjoy the music was a gut punch later on when they were putting the fake Junior down. This moment was the best in the movie for sure because it made the beginning of the movie click into place. It also set up an interesting situation further on.
After this reveal, the real Junior returns to the house, and we see that Hen doesn’t like him anymore, as she fell in love with the A.I. instead. By the end of the movie, we see Hen drop off that blank card to Junior, which was a great callback to a previous scene in the movie. That scene would be my second favourite of the movie. This tells the audience two things. One, that Hen had left the house on her own adventure, just like she wanted to do for a long time. Later, when we see a Hen return to the house, her personality has shifted, so we know right away that she is a fake. It seemed almost poetic that the two characters got what they wanted in the end. Hen got her freedom, and Junior got a wife that was wholly his.
Overall, the movie was quite a compelling watch. It felt slow here and there, and the development was quite minor, but after the reveal, everything does turn up a notch. If you are into dramas and can handle some nudity, give this movie a shot.