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'Ex Machina' vs. 'Chappie' (vs. 'Eva'): Will a Sexy Robot Beat the A.I. with Heart?

By Cindy Davis | Trailers | March 3, 2015 |

By Cindy Davis | Trailers | March 3, 2015 |

Boobs and blood vs. metal with a heart; who will win? It’s a curious contest, spurred by two upcoming films with international casts: Neill Blomkamp’s Chappie (opening this Friday) and Alex Garland’s Ex Machina (opening April 10th). With two new-ish directors (both are also writers) at the helm — Blomkamp debuted his first feature in 2009, this is Garland’s (Sunshine, Never Let Me Go and, 28 Days Later) directorial debut, both seem inclined towards science fiction thrillers, and now their similarly themed films will go nearly head to head, or rather, A.I. to A.I. For science fiction film aficionados, this is a fan-frakking-tastic, win/win situation — I’m definitely seeing both. But, who’ll win out at the box office; the sexy girlbot or the robo-boy with heart?


This new Ex Machina trailer, stars Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson and Alicia Vikander as Ava the temptress. Gleeson plays a young computer coder recruited by the head of his company (Isaac) to “research” a new sort of A.I. Of course, the obvious hook here is that either Gleeson or Isaac will also turn out to be non-human, and it would seem things with Ava aren’t going according to plan.

Blomkamp’s Chappie stars Dev Patel, Hugh Jackman, Sigourney Weaver, and Sharlto Copley as the hunk of metal with heart. Where Ava looks to be going on the offensive, Chappie seems more a defensive player, at least until he’s called on to save his human friends. If you’ve somehow managed to miss the latest trailer (or you’d just like to compare), here it is:

As far as box office numbers go, Blomkamp’s reputation (only slightly tarnished by Elysium) means Chappie will likely win out, though if Ex Machina turns out to be brilliant, word of mouth could make for serious competition. As it stands, the psychology angle of Ex Machina’s trailers has me ever-so-slightly more intrigued; Chappie will probably make me cry.


As if all that weren’t enough to fulfill our A.I. wet dreams, March 13th also (finally) brings the U.S. release of Kike Maíllo’s Eva, starring Daniel Brühl, Marta Etura, Lluís Homar and Claudia Vega. Brühl plays a programmer recruited by an old friend to work on creating young robots who he intends to model after his niece.

Eva has already won several Gaudí, Goya and Film Festival (Venice, Gérardmer, Nantes) Awards.

Cindy Davis, (Twitter)

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