I Origins (2014) – Mike Cahill (Friday’s Finest)


This week on Friday’s Finest we showcase another recent low budget – independent Sci-Fi movie called I-Origins. Like last week’s movie The Man From Earth, this movie probes profound questions about the human existence. I-Origins is a highly original movie about how discoveries in science and technology challenge us to look at ourselves differently and rethink our place in the world. It is about this tug of war between Science and Religion and how and if the two can be reconciled. Once again the less known about the plot going into it – the better, but I couldn’t leave you hanging without knowing the gist:

IMDB Storyline: I Origins begins when graduate student, Ian Gray, is researching the evolution of human eyes with Karen and Kenny, in order to prove that eyes have evolved instead of “appeared” as creationists claim. His fascination with eyes takes him into areas that have profound personal and cultural consequences.

I Origins begins rather unassumingly about two young people falling in love, and its a rich love story until something occurs which will leave the viewer in shock, it certainly did me. From then on, a feeling of insecurity pervades the movie where you don’t know what will happen next. Hollywood does not seem make films like this. They can do a lot of things, but they can’t seem to write scenes, scenarios, and certainly not dialog like in I Origins which so closely resemble real life.

From Steven Leibson’s review of I Origins:

There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy. – Hamlet (1.5.167-8), Hamlet to Horatio

Actually, we know that Shakespeare did get it right. Science adds new discoveries and corrects old theories constantly as it progresses. What’s this have to do with “I, Origins”? It’s one of the main themes of the movie: What if there’s more to the universe than what we can perceive with our senses. Ask any real scientist and you’ll find out that the concept is hardly new or controversial. We can’t directly perceive radio waves or x-rays yet we make use of them every day. Nevertheless, this movie approaches the topic in a way that makes this question, perhaps, easier to approach for non-scientists.

I recommend another Mike Cahill Sci Fi called Another Earth which I analysed in a post here.

I Origins Movie Trivia:

  • The famous National Geographic cover of the Afghan girl whose eyes mesmerized the world and who was found years later makes a cameo in the film.
  • Resurrection is a big theme throughout the movie, as Ian doesn’t believe in it and Sofi does. The eye necklace Sofi wears is the eye of Horus, an Egyptian symbol for healing and resurrection.
  • The book Ian is reading in the cafeteria is called The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins.

“The more I live, the more I learn. The more I learn, the more I realize, the less I know.”- Michel Legrand

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Posted in Movies and TV, Science

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