Study Break: ‘Transcendence’ review

Photograph by Andy Templeton via

“Transcendence,” directed by Wally Pfister and starring Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Paul Bettany and Morgan Freeman, opened in theaters on Friday.

When noted artificial intelligence researcher Dr. Will Caster, played by Depp, is shot and killed by an anti-technology group, his consciousness is uploaded to a computer and begins to rapidly evolve.

The film deals with a hypothetical concept known as “the singularity,” in this film referred to as “transcendence,” which is essentially a point in time when artificial intelligence will have surpassed the limits of the human brain.

While the film can be a bit slow at times and is certainly burdened by the occasional inconsistencies and questions common in pseudoscience movies, it is also engaging and raises many questions about morality and the definition of consciousness.

If you want to see a decently thought-provoking technological thriller, and can spare the $9 for a ticket, “Transcendence” is certainly worth checking out.

David Kahn can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.