Saturday, August 16, 2008

'eXistenZ' Review

***1/2 Out of ***** 'eXistenZ' was released about the same time as 'The Matrix' and comparatively, would best be described as the more indie, strange and surreal. In addition, it is prototypal sci-fi, sure not to disappoint as it raises questions about the nature of reality and technology in such a way that you will most likely leave the film with a somewhat profound idea(s) or thought(s) you didn't have before, and well, that is an admirable goal for a film. Allegra Geller (JJL) is a monumentally successfull game designer, and her latest smears boundaries of escapism and reality. Her only ally is Ted Pikul (Law) as they experience the game together, dodging assassination attempts real/fake and possible other misadventures. Did I say this film was strange (And that is fine with me.)? Indeed, as players of the organic game system leave existence and enter 'eXistenZ' through a port in their backs, connecting to their CNS, via a cord/wire that connects to what looks like a deflated sheep's stomach, the gaming module. Finding a Chinese restaurant in the middle of the woods and ordering a dish of lizards, reptiles and other assorted boney oddities and then fashioning a gun and utilizing it from the dish, is standard fare for this game. Of course, at times the viewer doesn't know if they're in the game or not in the game. Or as Ted says, “Are we playing the game right now?” Well, are we? Or are we playing the game within the game? And on and on...

1 comment:

  1. Growing up I always wondered if there were giants out there controling things (like cars on the road) just like I controled the Matchbox cars on the city street playset I had at home. How do we know what is real and what is fake? That question seems to be asked more and more these days as special effects rule the boxoffice and photoshoped pictures are abound. I fear that our children will be the first ones that ask, "Are we playing the game right now?"