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Film Review - Screamers
Now here is a strange little movie. Set in the future on a mining planet ravaged by war, Screamers demonstrates the dangers of releasing an autonomous weapon.
Sirius 6b was discovered to be a large source of energy. Enough for Earth for many years. But the mining of the energy leaked radiation. Soon war broke out between factions. One wanting to continue the mining, one wanting to shut it down. The war has been raging for twenty years. The faction wanting to stop mining has released the screamers, autonomous self-replicating robots that kill anything with a pulse.
Peter Weller is Hendricksson, commander of an outpost waiting for the next fight. Hendricksson receives orders to work out a peace treaty with the mining faction. What he learns is that the screamers have taken over the planet.
This is the good bit of the science fiction side of the movie. The screamers have become in a way, a form of life. They reproduce and evolve. As a species they have become better and better at killing people. This evolution is what gives the end a really good twist.
Other than that, this movie is all about people running away from monsters, lots of shooting, etc. It doesn't look like a great film, but for the few statements of the risks of autonomous weapons. If you consider that in the early days of the 21st century we are on the brink of releasing autonomous weapons, there is an important point which does give this film real purpose.
The production values are acceptable but not top notch. The acting is so-so. The dialog, not believable. But the core message of the film makes Screamers worth seeing if you are renting the film at a low price.