Young programmer Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson) wins a competition to meet the legendary but very reclusive Nathan (Oscar Isaac), the owner of the company Caleb works for, on his secluded, private estate. Once there Caleb discovers this isn’t just a holiday, but that he’s expected to take part in an experiment to see whether Nathan has broken through the barrier to create an artificial intelligence that can truly think for itself, and which is indistinguishable from human behaviour.
Caleb is introduced to Ava (Alicia Vikander), an AI housed in a very human looking body. Soon Caleb is thrown into a quandary. He is extremely taken by Ava, but knows there’s always the possibility that rather than truly thinking, Ava is simply using her programming to ‘fool’ him into thinking she’s more ‘real’ than she is. With Nathan possibly switching Ava off if she fails – something Ava seems to be afraid of – and Caleb increasingly wondering how he knows whether anything is real, the situation starts to grow dangerous. [Read more…]