"I'm feeling a little disconnected from my real life - I mean, I don't know where my body is, or where reality is, what I've actually done or not done."
"That's a great sign - the game is a lot more fun when it starts to feel realer than than real."
Allegra Geller, the leading game designer in the world, is testing her new virtual reality game, eXistenZ with a focus group. As they begin, she is attacked by a fanatic assassin employing a bizarre organic gun. She flees with a young marketing trainee, Ted Pikul, who is suddenly assigned as her bodyguard. Unfortunately, her pod, an organic gaming device that contains the only copy of the eXistenZ game program, is damaged.
To inspect it, she talks Ted into accepting a gameport in his own body so he can play the game with her. The events leading up to this, and the resulting game lead the pair on a strange adventure where reality and their actions are impossible to determine from either their own or the game's perspective
If you want a movie that is out of the ordinary, a bit freaky and leaves you going 'what the heck?!?!' then tune in to eXistenZ.
With themes like reality, perversion, sex, insanity and death this is bound to get some big reactions from the audience. Try not to read too much about the plot, or it'll be ruined for you. What I can tell you is that Cronenberg takes you on a trip down into the world of video games that acts as a metaphor for any kind of escapist behaviour. Living out fantasies is something people always dream of, but how far can you go into it, before reality gets blurred and the fantasy takes over and turns into a nightmare or you no longer know when you are in the real or virtual world? These are the themes touched in eXistenZ.
The story and directing are excellent, avoiding the usual pitfalls and clichÃ ©s linked to stories like this. The film shows some pretty disgusting stuff, like making an organic gun (ick!) but is unusually low-key in the gore department in comparison to a lot of movies of this type. There's nothing too over the top and the story will leave you with more questions than answers. The acting is great, and whilst it may seem a bit stiff at times it really does suit the entire atmosphere really well.
This movie takes some getting used to but if you can at least adapt to it, then it is worth the watch, just beware that if you enjoy it you may end up watching it several times, just trying to understand it all.
I remember watching this as a teenager and really enjoying it, not that I could remember a single thing that happened in the film. Luckily I have an awesome father-in-law who found and bought me a copy.
What I really like about this film is how nothing seems to make sense and you're not really sure what is reality and what is just part of the program. They also did what I think would be neat for a few more films to do, which is that you are left at the end of the movie going 'uh, what just happened, was it real or not?'.
Whilst the special effects seem a bit iffy at times, given the budget etc. they did a good job and the movie has a gritty enough feel to it which only adds to the whole ambience of the movie making it that little bit better and confusing.
The thing that makes this movie as good as it is is the fact that you are trying to work out what is real and what isn't right along with the main characters. Well worth a watch.
If you want a movie that looks like it's trapped in a hallucinogenic shadow world, layers of trippy deep, this is the one. Where games are so advanced and invasive and interactive, that you have trouble telling where the real world ends and the game begins.
Always a fan of concept-movies that give you a scaryily 'big' picture to contemplate as a possible 'truth about the universe', this one really appealed to my sense of 'It's Out There.' Somewhat like 'The Thirteenth Floor', in that the concept of a realistic simulation inside another realistic simulation, like your Sims characters taking time out to play a Sim-The Sims... If you open your mind to a layered, fractal universe, could make you wonder if WE are just a simulation too... With all of the topical debate going on between Creationism vs Intelligent Design vs Darwinian Evolution... this movie is quite neuron-tweaking if you let yourself explore alternate concepts.
overall, a real mind-twister, with some funky (but quite totally grose) scenes, this is not one for the wee ones... but for those who always want to see the other side of any coin, who liked Donnie Darko, this is a great way to pass the evening. Bring on the popcorn...
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