Monday, October 24, 2016

Like Westworld? Try These Books And Movies at the Library

Like around 6 million other people, have you been tuning into HBO's new drama Westworld? The weekly drama, originally a 1973 movie directed by author Michael Crichton, follows an old west theme park staffed by robots.

For $40,000 a day, guests can do... whatever. While the guests follow their own desires, secrets lie beneath the sunny desert exterior. If you are as intrigued as I am and looking to fill the time between Sundays, try these items the library has to offer.

Click on the title to see if it is available at the library.

Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

You could call this as Crichton's follow up novel to Westworld. It follows the same theme: a theme park for rich people where the attractions go horribly wrong and people end up screaming. A fun read with lots of interesting science.

There's also a movie or two based on the novel.

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

At first glance, a novel about a bunch of children fighting to the death in a reality show-esque environment does not share much with a western with robots. However, both show the inhumanity of man in a fake environment. Both also, depending on how the show goes, have a female protagonist unwillingly breaking out of her place in society.

There's also a movie version (with sequels Catching Fire, Mockingjay Part 1 and Part 2) of this you may have heard about.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K. Dick

This novella might be better known by the movie's title of Blade Runner, but the story follows a close science fiction line to Westworld. The plot is about a man hunting down escaped androids using various mental tests to disprove their humanity. The same questions of pure consciousness and humanity for artificial intelligence are used in Westworld

Terminator Genisys

Let's be honest, this movie is on the list because it's a watchable Rock'em Sock'em Robot movie. Back from the future, the Arnold robot must save two people from people machines blah blah blah there's guns and explosions. Not much is available for your thinking caps to cover, but if you are looking for robots that look like people, this movie has that.

Ex Machina

The last on this list is a personal favorite and should be set aside for mature audiences only. A man is sent to his boss's home where he is given a task: evaluate the artificially intelligent robot the boss has created. The robot also happens to look like a beautiful young woman. Is the boss insane? Does the robot have an agenda of her own? What is innocence and consciousness? In the end, you will wonder who was testing whom all along.

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