Willis’ ‘Surrogates’ is worth the trip to the theater

by Amanda YanchuryStaff Writer

I wasn’t expecting much when I walked into the theater to see the new film “Surrogates.” Science fiction is not typically my preferred genre, and with a premise that seemed unbelievable, it didn’t seem like it would be a good use of my hour and half. I was pleasantly surprised, however, when the movie got off to promising start.

The movie begins by showcasing a time line of the development of surrogate technology, which is the replacing of the human body with a lifelike robot, or “surry.” When the surrogate is “on,” the human operates it from their home. The surry “charges” when the human decides they want to operate their own body the old-fashioned way.

The use of surrogates becomes wildly popular after it is proven that crime rates, disease and discrimination are all but eliminated when the majority of the population is using them. The world is suddenly a utopia where everyone is a physically perfect version of themselves (for a small fee).

Bruce Willis plays the role of the main character, Agent Greer, who works for the FBI. He, like almost everyone else, uses a surrogate, but is disheartened by the use of them because it put a lot stress on his marriage and other relationships. The interesting thing about the technology is that it does so much good but drastically changes the way people live their lives.

The premise of the plot focuses on a rare crime – a homicide. What’s different about this crime, however, is that it isn’t just the surrogate that gets destroyed. The actual human running the robot is killed as well. Agent Greer, in an attempt to solve the crime, must leave his home for the first time in years in order to try and solve it.

The homicide is a result of a plot to take out the creator of surrogacy, Canter, and his company, ASI. In a conspiratorial set of events that include a few surprises and twists, the movie keeps the audience interested without having too many events that would confuse someone who is not interested in the genre. At one point, the film turns into more of an action-adventure that keeps the audience members on the edge of their seats.

While Willis played the most prominent role, the supporting cast also did an excellent job. The sidekick, Agent Peters, was played by Radha Mitchell. Agent Peters ends up playing a larger role than we think. Greer’s wife, Maggie, becomes consumed with her surrogate as a way to escape the tragedy of losing their son. Played by actress Rosamund Pike, Maggie is a blinding example of surrogacy gone wrong. Another character worth noting was the pro-human activist “The Prophet,” played exceptionally by Ving Rhames.

Overall, the movie went by quickly because it kept me entertained. I was pleased because it keeps the audience guessing, but it doesn’t drag on.

It makes us ponder life as we know it, think about the importance of human interaction and consider the drastic effects that the development of technology could potentially have on humanity.

I recommend giving this movie a try. It’s entertaining, and it will make you think, without being overwhelming.