“I, Origins” – (Spoiler) Review by TheMattBreakdown

The Matt Breakdown’s Quick List Reviews — I, Origins (2014)

 

I, Origins tells the tale of Ian (Michael Pitt)–a molecular biologist obsessed with officially ending the creationist argument that the human eye is too complex to evolve without a higher power. He falls in love with the very spiritual Sofi (Astrid Bergès-Frisbey) who opens his mind and then crushes his heart when she is crushed by an elevator. Dealing with grief, Ian becomes romantically involved with his geeky student lab partner Karen (Brit Marling). The two get married, have a child, and soon discover a scientific breakthrough that is bound to offend indoctrinated religious groups as well as inflexible scientists around the world. The breakthrough: Our eyes carry information within them and we all get more than one crack at life.

Positives

  • Both couples are cute. This scientist found two keepers without having to rely on OKCupid.
  • Thought-provoking sci-fi without big budget effects.
  • Doesn’t stretch too many science facts.
  • Film makes many connections to itself and past subplots.
  • Parts come across like an elongated episode of The X Files or Fringe.
  • Shows how science and spirituality can overlap. Sometimes.
  • Deals with death, faith, and science without shoving values down the audience’s throat. Your throats are safe.
  • Main characters are distinct. Interesting exchanges between them.
  • Finally a movie for fans of reincarnation. The biggest recycling process ever.

Negatives

  • Movie cliché of scientists opening their minds because of a spiritual partner. Is it ever the other way?
  • A quick subtle death of a main character with little build up or aftermath.
  • Characters conveniently know the right piece of information or have the perfect connection to move the plot along a little too easily.
  • Subplot about the number 11 that dies off. What happened? Did that get crushed in an elevator too?
  • Steven Yeun’s successful businessman character is underutilized.
  • Third Act loses dramatic tension when the main characters talk mostly over the phone.
  • Soon after smelling the perfume of dead wife Sofi, Ian practically masturbates. Maybe there’s a better way to show he still has feelings for her?
  • No real surprise at the end. Such a lack of celebration for how big of a scientific breakthrough it is. We’re talking bigger than PopTarts and the polio vaccine combined. Yet no emotional final punch.

The Final Break Down:
3.5/5

If you like this article, you might like Matt’s YouTube channel where he reviews video games, film, and more at http://www.youtube.com/TheMattBreakdown

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