LX 2048 has thought-provoking ideas but doesn’t have the smart script and engaging characters to convey it.
Mankind has destroyed the ozone layer. People can’t go out in the daylight. Everyone has to take pills – LX 2048 – for depression. Everything is done in the virtual world.
LX 2048 has a topical backdrop that it might as well be our future. The sci-fi drama has interesting worldbuilding and nifty effects even without the bid-budget CGI.
The movie revolves around Adam Bird, a man who’s disappointed with his plugged-in world and works in a company that makes VR tech. He’s determined to live a normal life despite the dire circumstances. He goes to work driving a convertible with the top down. He wears a gas mask and a hazmat suit on top of his office clothes.
Adam is also dying. Chip technology is threatening to make his company obsolete. If it does go under, his life insurance won’t get paid and his spouse won’t receive an exclusive benefit, leaving his family with no means to support themselves.
To solve his problem, Adam contacts the inventor of Chip to save his job. Things get complicated as he gets thrown into a series of unexpected events. Different characters show up in his doorstep, including his wife who has come up with a plan of her own.
At the same time, the movie touches on thought-provoking themes. The implications of virtual reality, human cloning, and genetic engineering on society.
All of this sounds like the makings of a great sci-fi movie. Unfortunately, LX 2048 isn’t able to explore any of these ideas in a new or engaging way. It prefers to talk about its concepts through an unlikeable character.
Everyone here is an asshole, which makes it hard to get on board with Adam’s pity train and rebellion. He’s disappointed at his family for living in the virtual world, yet he refuses to turn off a young blonde virtual girlfriend that he has sex with through a doll.
None of the characters nor their relationships is developed. No matter how the cast does their job well – Delroy Lindo is a breath of fresh air from Adam’s whiny melodrama, played nicely by James D’Arcy – you can’t connect with the film.
It does at least, commit to being dystopian until the end. Adam is finally able to adapt to the world, but at a cost.
LX 2048 poses some interesting questions that you’ll get from Black Mirror. It’s a small scale sci-fi film with ambitious concepts. But these ideas are better off in a series where LX 2048 can truly examine its conundra.
LX 2048 has thought-provoking ideas but doesn't have the smart script and engaging characters to convey it.