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Last summer, Ex Machina told the story of what happens when a genius decides to create artificial intelligence, only to see it go awry. This summer, Morgan looks to tell that same sort of story, and it's hard not to notice the similarities between the two on paper. However, after watching the first teaser for Morgan, we not only have faith that the two films will be wildly different, we also have to praise whoever plotted this sparse, intriguing teaser. Watch it for yourself below.
With 20th Century Fox's release of the trailer on YouTube, Morgan has introduced the public to its sci-fi mystery in a way that most films choose to ignore when it comes to advertising. Instead of filling the trailer with the usual array of cut away scenes of tension and action, the trailer for the Kate Mara starring film decides to fill in a little bit of backstory. Slow, deliberate shots of the sets we'll see in the film are punctuated by dialogue that suggests the peril ahead. Yet all throughout, we only see brief glimpses of actual people, and stark, un-populated settings. If Alfred Hitchcock sold Ex Machina the same way he sold Psycho, you'd have the trailer for Morgan.
Story wise, Morgan tells the story of the titular synthetic being, and the decision that's to be made involving her continued existence. This decision will come down to a risk analyst, played by Kate Mara, as she weighs the history before and after an industrial accident of sorts. Judging by the blood smear on that door in the middle of the trailer, we'd venture to guess that "accident" was the murder of someone on the project. Just a tiny guess. Now this is where Ex Machina and Morgan begin to part ways. While the former film saw its examiner testing whether the A.I. involved could pass as Human, this film is pondering the ethics of allowing a being we created to exist after it's committed the ultimate sin. Both films approach the same apple, but Morgan's bite looks to be more ethical and less sexual.
Perhaps the most interesting difference between Morgan and its predecessor is the fact that we don't know exactly what sort of organism Morgan truly is. While she's mentioned as a "human," quotation marks and all, she's referred to as an "it" in the film's fitting tagline: "Don't Let It Out." With the accelerated path of growth and development that is charted through the trailer's opening minutes, it's assumed that she's definitely an organic being to a certain degree. Though if early reports hold up, Morgan is a "genetically engineered" being, which means that not only is she organic, but the span of her life may be a lot shorter than we think – thus explaining her child's mind. Also starring in this fun house of sci-fi morality is an all star cast of folks like Game Of Thrones' Rose Leslie, Paul Giamatti, Toby Jones, and even Anya Taylor-Joy, who's experiencing a bit of a popularity bump after her featured role in this year's horror hit The Witch.
The world will meet Morgan on September 2nd, which gives us just a little bit of pause, as that's sometimes where bad films are left to rot. We're crossing our fingers that this isn't the case with Morgan, as they really nailed that trailer.