I Orgins

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight

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“I Origins” (2014)

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Your eyes are said to be the windows to your soul. The complex patterns of your irises are supposed to be unique to you. Just like fingerprints, our eyes have a pattern that no one else has. Ian (Michael Pitt) is a serious micro-biology student whose interest involves the evolution of eyes. Ian takes his field of study so seriously that he has been taking close-up pictures of eyes for a good deal of his life. In the lab, Ian has been given a new lab assistant, Karen (Brit Marling). Ian soon learns that Karen can keep up with him, and her knowledge is on par with his, bringing fresh and exciting ideas to the lab.

I Origins

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight

On a rooftop Halloween party, he encounters a girl who is wearing a costume where only her eyes are not covered. After a brief, flirtatious chat, he convinces her to let him take a picture of her eyes. She then leads him to a closet, and briefly makes out with him, before mysteriously leaving without giving Ian, her name or number. While the research in the lab looks promising, Ian can’t get the mysterious woman out of his mind. Through a series of coincidences, he comes across a billboard that displays her eyes as part of the advertisement. Through the Internet, he finds information on who she is and where she lives. He starts hanging out in her neighborhood and quickly finds her on the subway. Very rapidly their romance blooms and he seems to have the world by the tail. The girl, Sofi (Astrid Berges-Frisbey) is like no one he has ever met before; someone who is all about spirituality and God…two things in which Ian the scientist doesn’t believe. Is there too much of a gap between Sofi and Ian for their relationship to last?

I Origins

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight

In this film from director/writer Mike Cahill, we ponder the question of science versus spirituality. Do we believe in only the facts and what is in front of us or believe in a God that created the world and all it contains?  Cahill along with Marling brought us the wonderful “Another Earth,” which also made us question our place in the Universe. Cahill doesn’t succeed as well as he did with the early film. The payoff of the film takes too long, letting the film drag at both the middle of the movie and near the end. The film does have a few twists and turns that I didn’t see coming, making the film a little out of the ordinary.

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I Origins

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight

I love Brit Marling, one of my favorite up and coming young actresses, and she doesn’t disappoint in this film. Showing versatility and the ability to be extremely believable in the part, she stands out in the role. Astrid Berges-Frisbey is just quirky enough in the role of Sofi to be likeable, though I think, “Mr. Intellectual” Ian would have become bored with her eventually. The film though is let down by the lead role, played by Michael Pitt. Pitt makes a believable scientist but doesn’t have the charisma to carry the full-screen time that the role demands. He seems to have only one emotion, being staid, and when asked to do more, just doesn’t quite carry it off. There is also very little chemistry between Berges-Frisbey and Pitt, making the scenes seem a little staged. The script, by Cahill just doesn’t quite deliver on the emotional effect that this film needed. There isn’t that “full of wonder” moment that needed to be there. Brit Marling does all she can to help the film, but the movie is ultimately let down by its lead actor and it very slow resolution.

My Rating:  Bargain Matinee

My movie rating system from Best to Worst:  1). I Would Pay to See it Again  2). Full Price  3). Bargain Matinee  4). Cable  5). You Would Have to Pay Me to See it Again

“I Origins” is currently playing in the Atlanta area.

“I Origins” Website

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