Despite Jennifer Lopez, Netflix’s futuristic AI Pic Falls Short


Netflix’s newest sci-fi thriller, Atlas, guarantees a gripping story of synthetic intelligence gone rogue however in the end struggles beneath the burden of its ambitions. Directed by Brad Peyton and written by Leo Sardarian and Aron Eli Coleite, the movie stars Jennifer Lopez as Atlas, a lady dwelling in a future world who distrusts AI and is nice at the whole lot and smarter than everybody. The script teeters between high-concept and a showcase for Lopez’s versatility, and regardless of a good premise for some futuristic thrills, Atlas typically seems like a missed alternative, hampered by sluggish pacing and a scarcity of depth in character growth for everybody else besides Atlas.

The movie opens with a world in chaos. AI methods, as soon as built-in into each aspect of human life from transportation to medical care, have turned in opposition to their creators. The rebel was instigated by Harlan (Simu Liu), an AI humanoid created by Shepard Robotics. Harlan, the movie’s main antagonist, bypassed safety protocols, resulting in an rebellion that claimed one million lives earlier than he fled the planet. The narrative then jumps 28 years into the longer term, the place we meet Atlas (Lopez), an completed counterterrorism professional.

The plot ramps up when General Boothe (Mark Strong) and Colonel Banks (Sterling Ok. Brown) enlist her to search out Harlan following the invention of a sleeper-cell AI named Casca (Abraham Popoola). Despite preliminary reluctance, Atlas manages to extract info from Casca, setting the stage for a high-stakes mission to seize Harlan offworld. However, the mission’s execution, led by Colonel Banks, is fraught with rigidity as she insists on collaborating, understanding she understands Harlan higher than anybody.

The movie’s futuristic setting by no means is exactly outlined, an inventive selection that each aids and hinders its narrative. While this ambiguity permits for inventive freedom, it left me greedy for context. The dialogue typically is clunky and exposition-heavy, the place characters are largely complaining about, or praising, Atlas. That is everybody’s sole focus and comes on the expense of broader plot growth and character growth, which is why the movie typically is a chore to endure. 

While Lopez is enjoyable to look at at instances — she does humor very properly — the pacing is sluggish in an effort to provide Atlas extra to do. Liu’s Harlan suffers probably the most. He’s meant to be a formidable antagonist, but his presence is frustratingly underutilized. The character’s motivations and backstory stay largely unexplored, lowering him to a shadowy determine relatively than a totally realized villain. The script affords him little alternative to develop Harlan into a really menacing drive.  

Visually, the film struggles with the pitfalls frequent to many Netflix sci-fi movies. The CGI, whereas formidable, typically seems unfinished and overly reliant on greenscreen, detracting from the immersive potential of its futuristic world. Despite that, manufacturing designer Barry Chusid’s imaginative and prescient for the longer term is way extra detailed than any of the particular results, significantly within the design of inside units and technological developments that populate the movie’s universe.

The third act’s reveal is sort of stunning, particularly given how the movie revolves round Atlas. It’s anticipated that she performs a major position within the conspiracy, however the clarification of how Harlan manages his actions and the explanations behind her conduct is surprising. The two characters share an intriguing connection that ties to the center of the movie, revealing why she feels responsible for setting these occasions into movement and provides a layer of complexity to their relationship.  However, this twist arrives too late to totally redeem the movie’s a lot earlier missteps.

The message on the movie’s coronary heart is that AI and people can coexist in concord. There are fairly a couple of movies popping out of Hollywood in regards to the matter, which is a superb dialog starter. It’s fascinating to see these kind of movies in an age the place AI is frowned upon, particularly in Hollywood. Does Atlas have the potential to be a dialog starter? Well, this sci-fi motion flick doesn’t stand out amongst Netflix’s already crowded sci-fi catalog, however for followers of Lopez, this could be the dialog starter they’re in search of.

Title: Atlas
Director: Brad Peyton
Screenwriters: Leo Sardarian, Aron Eli Coleite
Cast: Jennifer Lopez, Simu Liu, Sterling Ok. Brown, Gregory James Cohan, Mark Strong, Abraham Popoola, Lana Parrilla
Distributor: Netflix
Running time: 1 hr 58 min


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