What happened here?
Ok. So. I went into this movie with some expectations. I (thought) I had heard good things about this movie, but if I did......man were they WRONG. This movie is TERRIBLE. Like, Transendence levels of terrible. Actually, I think Transcendence is better than this. Either way, that's not a movie that you want to compare yourself to. Yet here we are. So.....what went wrong with Morgan? I think it starts with the writing. The writing is hilariously terrible. I'm sorry, Seth Owen, but you should've have thrown out the dialogue in this movie and started anew. But he didn't, and director Luke Scott didn't stop him, so here we are.
You know, I'm kind of surprised. You have basically a novice of a director and a writer, but they managed to line up some pretty big names to star in this. Kate Mara leads a cast that includes Rose Leslie, (Ygritte) Toby Jones, (from the Marvel Cinematic Universe) Vinette Robinson, (Sherlock) Chinese superstar Michelle Yeoh, Brian Cox, Jennifer Jason Leigh, (seriously....you followed your Oscar nominating performance and your award from ME, since that's important, where I called you the comeback actress of 2015 with this piece of garbage????) and PAUL FREAKING GIAMATTI, who is in this movie for like 3 scenes that the marketed the crap out of. Oh! And did I mention that Anya Taylor-Joy is Morgan? You might not know of her, but she was the lead in an OUTSTANDING film called The Witch, which you will be hearing about in a few months when I do my year in review. She was easily the best part of that film and easily the worst part of this film. Morgan.....just wasn't interesting. I can't fault Anya Taylor-Joy too much. She's young, and she was certainly not given much to work with from a writing and directing perspective. But, after seeing what she could do in The Witch, I expected so much more from her! Kate Mara is basically playing Zoe Barnes but as a secret agent, so I guess that was ok. But now I feel like really going to town on this film.
Maybe I hated this film as much as I did because of how good Ex Machina is. Or maybe it's the other way around. Maybe a film like Morgan allows me to appreciate Ex Machina more than I already did. Either way, Ex Machina succeeds at telling a realistic and believeable story about the evolution of an AI at almost every level, whereas Morgan does the exact opposite. I thought that maybe there were going to be tales of Morgan manipulating the scientists that created her. Maybe there would be an investigation into how Morgan's mind works. But no! One second she's basically fine, then, after the world's worst psych evaluation, she's killing LITERALLY everyone. Like, seriously. The people that she called her parent 5 minutes before are now being killed by her. For......reasons. Oh! Also the motivations of the scientists make ZERO sense. Particularly with Toby Jones's character. Seriously. How any character like that would make it past a psych exam is beyond me, and when his fate is shown towards the end I couldn't help but laugh out loud. It's not great. Finally, the final big action set piece (because obviously every movie about AI has to have a car chase and a fist fight with the AI because that's a good idea) was hilariously terrible. If you couldn't tell already. Do you want me to spoil it? Fine. I'll spoil it. This movie isn't going to do anythign but make my worst movies of 2016, so you shouldn't watch it. SO! Kate Mara and Morgan are duking it out, and it looks like Morgan got the upper hand and killed Mara. So Morgan goes back to the lake she was at previous the fight, just to have Mara come out of nowhere and pistol whip her. But then! And wait....you're gonna love this part! Then, after Mara pistol whips Morgan into the lake, rather than taking a few shots at her with the gun that's, you know, in her hand; she jumps into the lake and drowns her! Like......are you serious, movie? And then she shoots the poor scientist watching this whole thing in terror so it isn't like she didn't have any bullets in the freaking gun. No! She just felt like getting up close and personal with Morgan. Brilliant.
I am struggling to find anything good to talk about with this movie. Oh! I know. Even though Giamatti was only in this film for like 10 minutes, he was the best thing about it. His script was terrible-he was the psychologist responsible for the worst psych eval in the history of man-but man was Giamatti clearly having a blast with his limited role. And, obviously, the distribution studio behind this hunk of trash realized that he was the best part of the movie because he was in nearly every trailer. Oh well. Time to forget about this film until I write my worst movies of 2016 list.
The Critique: A total disaster, Morgan is one of the worst films of 2016. 'Nuff said.
The Recommendation: You know it's coming......AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE
Rewatchability: Ya. I think I'm gonna rewatch this. Said no one ever.
The Verdict: 2/10 Garbage
Phew! Well there you have it. Took me 30 minutes EXACTLY to write this. Now let's move on.