Director: Steven Soderbergh
Writer: David Koepp
Starring: Zoë Kravitz, Byron Bowers, and Derek DelGaudio
Cinematographer: Steven Soderbergh
Hollywood is no stranger to films centered around crime. Even the trope of witnessing a crime while confined to a space has been around for a while. There’s the 1985 Peter Weir-directed Witness, in which a young boy discovers a brutal murder from a bathroom stall. In 2007, audiences saw Shia LaBeouf grow suspicious of his secretive neighbor in Disturbia. Who could forget watching Amy Adams keep tabs on the constant violence across the street in The Woman in the Window (2021)? This ongoing trope doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon.
The latest addition to this genre is Steven Soderbergh’s Kimi. The story follows Angela Childs (Zoë Kravitz), the human monitor of tech company Amygdala’s smart speaker KIMI. When Angela receives a recording of a violent encounter, she must race against the clock to help the victim in need. The only thing standing in her way is herself and her company.
Here are 4 reasons to watch New Line Cinema’s Kimi, on HBO Max February 10, 2022:
4) The Pandemic Lives On…
At this point, it’s hard to be oblivious to the current pandemic in both life and art. Though, some artists have chosen to use their work as an escape. Kimi uses the pandemic to its advantage, on the other hand. Angela’s anxieties and agoraphobia are on full display throughout this feature. And they’ve only been exacerbated by the pandemic. Koepp and Soderbergh integrate this concept into the film nicely. It ends up making for a reasonable setting as we see Angela evolve and chase after the truth. Personally, I would like for future movies to leave the pandemic behind. But the production team knew exactly how to play their cards. As a result, a realistic yet entertaining film followed.
3) Somebody Pass Me a Xanax!
If you want a film to get your uneasiness flowing, look no further than Kimi. This feature adds to the crime/thriller genre for its creative script alone. But it also happens to be an anxiety-inducing one that kept my attention from beginning to end. Mixing character-driven anxiety with great tension built within the action sequences, Soderbergh’s latest is a much-watch. Just try to do some deep breathing when you do!
2) Short and Sweet
Though this feature is fast-paced, its 89-minute runtime is the perfect length. There are moments that concentrate on Angela’s character, lifestyle, and development. And there are times when we see a direct result of her lifestyle in high-stake sequences. In short, the story never overstays its welcome. There is plenty of action and fair amounts of intrigue to make this a quick and fun watch.
1) Zoë Kravitz! Need I say more?
One of the reasons why this film works so well is because of Zoë Kravitz. She masters fear and anxiety convincingly. Kravitz plays Angela as if helplessness has overcome her- akin to a psychological hold that has manifested itself as physical panic. Her performance is seductive and assertive even though she’s playing a character who is frail and apprehensive. I could go on, but I think points have been made. Zoë Kravitz is simply stellar!
Overall, Soderbergh’s Kimi is a damn good time. There’s plenty to say about society’s reliance on technology while also exploring the ethics of corporate culture. Though it studders with respect to the pacing in the first act, the film soars for the remaining of its runtime. Mix that in with the unlikely hero trope, and you’ve got yourself an enjoyable crime thriller. So, what are you waiting for? Catch it exclusively on HBO Max!
Check out the trailer below for Kimi – available on HBO Max