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Dr. Will Caster is the foremost researcher in the field of Artificial Intelligence, working to create a sentient machine that combines the collective intelligence of everything ever known with the full range of human emotions.
Action Drama Sci-Fi - This is a slow and talky science fiction drama, with the trailers
showing most of the action-oriented bits. Johnny Depp actually has a
much smaller role than expected, with Rebecca Hall being the true
lead. Other familiar faces such as Morgan Freeman and Cillian Murphy
also have small roles. Adult subject matter and some violence make
the film not for kids, who would probably be bored.
Berardinelli, Internet CriticFull Review Average Too often, Transcendence shows a marked preference for what Shakespeare called "sound and fury, signifying nothing."
Roger EbertFull Review Above Average What we've got here isn't just a "Frankenstein"-like parable of scientific hubris run amok, but also the story of a grieving spouse who's reluctant to let go of her mate and tries to prolong his life artificially. The film's script, credited to Jack Paglen, takes its sweet time confirming whether the being uploaded into the neural network Will Caster or merely a digital copy, and if a copy, what sort.
USA TodayFull Review Average Though it purports to question our reliance on technology and incite some rage against the machine, Transcendence is really just a heavy-handed story of a mad scientist. And it's not a particularly effective cautionary tale.
NY PostFull Review Poor Lethargic direction, bland visuals, credulity-straining plotting and tin-eared dialogue turn even pros like Rebecca Hall, Paul Bettany and Morgan Freeman into sleepwalking bores.
Note: The rating
above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on
their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.
OPINION OVERVIEW The following is the original "What's Worth
Watching" write-up for this movie.
Based on a theater exit polling of 46 moviegoers:
TEENS: The four male reviews are not much help since they are so varied. All three females felt it was an "above average" movie which is good.
TWENTYSOMETHINGS: The one male and one female loved "Transcendence."
ADULTS: Considering the star power in this movie, these reviews are somewhat disappointing but certainly not bad. About half the males and females rated it an "above average" movie, which indicates a movie they enjoyed very much but didn't love. Unfortunately, the remaining half only felt "Transcendence" was an "average" movie (enjoyable but nothing special or memorable).
Dr. Will Caster (Johnny Depp) is the foremost researcher in the field of
Artificial Intelligence, working to create a sentient machine that combines the
collective intelligence of everything ever known with the full range of human
emotions. His highly controversial experiments have made him famous, but they
have also made him the prime target of anti-technology extremists who will do
whatever it takes to stop him.
However, in their attempt to destroy Will, they inadvertently become the
catalyst for him to succeed - to be a participant in his own transcendence. For
his wife Evelyn (Rebecca Hall) and best friend Max Waters (Paul Bettany), both
fellow researchers, the question is not if they can...but if they should.
Their worst fears are realized as Will's thirst for knowledge evolves into a
seemingly omnipresent quest for power, to what end is unknown. The only thing
that is becoming terrifyingly clear is there may be no way to stop him.