Movie Reviews

Jennifer Lopezs New Netflix Movie Oddly Flips The Concept Of Another Sci-Fi Film From 5 Years Ago


  • In
    , Jennifer Lopez’s character hunts an AI terrorist raised alongside her, and their background explores AI-human relationships like
    I Am Mother
  • Unlike
    I Am Mother
    features a human treating an AI like a son. The 2019 film saw an AI robot raising a human daughter.
  • I Am Mother
    received critical acclaim for its suspenseful narrative and twists, though its themes proved a major strength as well.

Atlas is now streaming on Netflix, and Jennifer Lopez’s new movie oddly flips the concept of another sci-fi film that debuted five years ago. Lopez takes on the role of a counterterrorism analyst in Atlas, and her title character is forced to grapple with the nuances of artificial intelligence throughout the film. Despite living in a technologically advanced future, Atlas Shepherd remains extremely skeptical of AI. It doesn’t help that she’s hunting down an AI terrorist named Harlan (played by Shang-Chi‘s Simu Liu), who once belonged to her family and was raised alongside her.

Lopez’s character is bent on finding and destroying Harlan, but she winds up utilizing an AI-powered mech suit named Smith in order to act out her mission. Through its title character’s journey, Atlas offers a poignant commentary on AI technology — one that feels all too relevant at the time of its release. Part of its premise also feels reminiscent of another sci-fi movie that premiered on Netflix five years ago. However, it reverses the key roles of that project, making for an interesting comparison.


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Jennifer Lopez’s Atlas Flips 2019’s I Am Mother

Both Feature Parent-Child Relationships Between AI & Humans

Atlas’ Harlan storyline flips the concept of another one of Netflix’s sci-fi movies: I Am Mother. I Am Mother debuted back in 2019, and the film explored a parental bond between a robot and a human, much like Atlas. However, while Atlas sees a human treating an AI like her son, I Am Mother follows a robot raising a human child. In I Am Mother, the robot is tasked with repopulating the Earth after humanity’s demise. However, its lies and manipulation are exposed throughout the film, raising questions about whether humans and AI can truly have bonds amid clashing goals.

sees a human treating an AI like her son,
I Am Mother
follows a robot raising a human child.

This theme also runs throughout Atlas, as Harlan comes to betray the woman who raises him. The scenario surrounding the movie’s villain feels like the reverse of I Am Mother, even if the rest of the story differs from Netflix’s 2019 sci-fi film. I Am Mother also fared much better critically despite featuring similar themes. While I Am Mother currently has a critic score of 89% on Rotten Tomatoes, Atlas has gotten a “rotten” score that is one of Lopez’s lowest.

Why I Am Mother Got Such Good Reviews

The Themes Were Elevated By Suspense & Twists

I Am Mother Netflix movie poster image.

I Am Mother got excellent reviews after its 2019 release, and the Netflix movie’s suspenseful narrative and thrilling twists are at least partly to blame. Numerous Rotten Tomatoes reviews cite these as strengths, and there’s no denying that the film takes viewers on a wild ride. The themes of the sci-fi movie are also thoughtful and well conveyed, making for an interesting reflection on technology and the relationship humans have with it. While Atlas sparks a similar conversation, it doesn’t seem to be hitting viewers nearly as hard. Perhaps that will change once the film has been out longer.

Source: Rotten Tomatoes

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