marți, 8 mai 2018

Anon, written and directed by Andrew Niccol

Anon, written and directed by Andrew Niccol

Anon is an interesting motion picture, although it will probably fail to become a Science Fiction classic along with 2001 A Space Odyssey, Blade Runner, Dr. Strangelove and How I learned to stop Worrying and Love the Bomb or other quintessential masterpieces.

Clive Owen is - like always- outstanding in the leading role of a police detective, Sal Frieland, whose job should be so easy in a future where we have everything recorded and therefore there is no shortage of evidence.
In a way, this is a strong point for the film, considering the invitation to think about issues like privacy, or lack there of, the digital trail that we already have behind and that Facebook and the rest use, misuse for profits or, in the case of Cambridge Analytica, for political gains.

The Google glasses have already been tested and then abandoned, but they used to be able to record all that a person saw and heard and this is what happens in the future presented in this feature, where everything we see and hear is stored.
Furthermore, when we cross people on the street, there is information that is listed next to their figure, except for the Girl, portrayed by Amanda Seyfried, who has special talents and no information available about her.

Indeed, this is a hacker that can clean one's record on demand, but she is also suspected of having killed clients, after she had messed up with their digital history.
In order to catch her, Sal will be the bait, claiming that he has paid a sex worker and he does not want his steady partner to know about it- and given this strange future, the woman could always ask the file with what he did that night.

The Girl cleans this record, eliminates the skeleton in the cupboard, but she is called again, this time for a drugs related operation and the two have sex, there is a hint that maybe this is not the murderer they are looking for.
However, things are complicated again, when the hacker discovers that she has had sex with a detective, who has lied about her identity and in addition, another colleague of the hero is killed, in the apartment next door, making The Girl the prime suspect in this new case as well.

Now that they are enemies, The Girl is punishing Sal and wipes up important memories, forcing him to call his ex-wife to send him pictures of their dead son, since he has nothing left from him after the hacker entered his - what would that be called? Personal Storage facility?
The problem is that The Girl- or some other villain? - has destroyed memories there too.

The creativity of the screen writer is to be admired in some instances, one of which involves the hero trying to chase the suspect, who can - in real time, live! - hack and distort what the detective sees.
The stairs are distorted and changed, so that he falls down them, because the images in his brain are of "fake" steps, not the real ones.

This is a subway station, the protagonist thinks he enters the subway, but that is again wrong and he is nearly killed by an approaching train which was not present in the "reality", or better said the fiction, sent to his brain.

Sal comments after this that we generally believe what we see, but this is no longer true...

We cannot believe what we see, when others have the ability to jam the pictures and insert a parallel world into our skulls.
As aforementioned, there are good ideas in this film, Clive Owen cannot be but excellent, but this does not look like a major critical success.

On the other hand, all the aforementioned archetypal Science Fiction works of art have been dismissed by the experts when they were first launched and this viewer is not thrilled by Star Wars either, hence Anon could be The new Wrath of Khan.

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