After Yang is an inspiring film about connection, love, and loss. It is a one of a kind film combining the sci-fi and drama genres, and it is truly compelling.
After Yang is set in a futuristic world where artificial intelligence controls much of what goes on. Colin Farrell plays Jake, who is married to Kyra, played by Jodie Turner-Smith. They live with their daughter Mika, played by Malea Emma Tjandrawidjaja, and a child android named Yang, played by Justin H. Min. Yang breaks down, which saddens Mika, and Jake does what he can to figure out how to repair Yang. But in the process Jake realizes that he hasn’t been as connected to his family as he could have been since they had Yang living with them. The film alternates between past and present, and it’s flashback sequences are dazzling and wonderful. The film’s sci-fi/AI angle only adds to the creativity. The writing is sensitive and moving.
I’m a big fan of films where technology is prominent, so After Yang’s futuristic setting really spoke to me. The film reminded me somewhat of Her (2013), directed by Spike Jonze. The world in After Yang is similar to the world in Her, but the AI feature in After Yang is a person, not an electronic voice like in Her, which makes Yang much more endearing. After Yangreminds us that although technology can add to our life, it can’t replace meaningful relationships with actual people, and we need to keep our loved ones (who are human) close.
I really loved After Yang. Unlike many sci-fi films that are geared toward younger people, this is a sci-fi film that the entire family can enjoy. It was also nice to see a sci-fi film that is empathetic and touching, as well as creative and powerful. After Yang takes us to an alternative world of surrealism, but with meaningful elements. I give After Yang three and a half stars.