Kimi, directed by Steven Soderbergh and written by David Koepp, is an amalgamation of three basic elements of filmmaking, relying on which it creates a niche for itself and stands out from the crowd. These three basic elements are: performance, cinematography, and tempo.
The vehemence of expression is something that you closely associate with many past ventures of Steven Soderbergh. He is one of those filmmakers who thrive in adversity. Be it the limitation of resources in his indie-ish projects, or in this case, merely the limitation of space. If you keenly observe the narrative, then you will notice that there is nothing so unique that the filmmaker brings to the plate. The conflicts and the plot points have been witnessed before. But it is the intensity and the zeal that are brought forth by the performance, coupled with creative camera movements, that takes you on a ride. The pace is quick, but nothing seems rushed. It’s almost surprising how the filmmaker was able to create a characteristic tensile tension on your nerves while keeping the film under 90 minutes long.
One more thing that works in Kimi’s favor is the contemporary setting, which makes it not only relatable but extremely relevant too. You don’t even realize that the emotions on display transude deep inside you, maybe because it is packaged like a plausible thriller. You assume that it is meant merely for entertainment, and the narrative completely deceives you. Steven Soderbergh never overemphasizes the emotions, but rather structures them in such a way that they never feel frivolous. There is a quirk to things, even in the most intense moments. It is absurd yet believable. It is intense yet never overdramatic.
Zoe Kravitz as Angela, in her non-conformist attitude, while suffering from agoraphobia, is a treat to watch. She is stubborn and has her own ways of dealing with things. She is never in the mood to compromise, be it in any facet of life. Maybe because she has compromised and suffered enough. Her agoraphobia originated from a concoction of many things. She had been molested in the past and was still coping with the trauma. The pandemic gave her all the more reason to stay indoors and created a fertile ground for her phobia to grow. She tries going on a breakfast date with her neighbor, whom she can see from her window, but retreats at the last moment due to her phobia.
She never keeps herself in a situation where she feels obligated to do something that she doesn’t want to do. It might lead others to think that she is brash and quite insensitively rude at times, but that is how she is, give or take. Her stoic face often hides the turbulent anxiety that surges inside her.
Kimi is similar to Amazon-owned Alexa. The key difference that makes it a notch better than its competitor, as explained by the CEO of Amygdala Corporation, Bradley Hasling, is the fact that it is not run by algorithms alone. He says that there are actual humans who are listening to the streams of commands and adapting Kimi to become smarter. Kimi might not know the answer to every question, but the humans who listen to these recorded commands answer them and add them to the responses. So basically, the next time you ask the same question, Kimi will give a unique automated response. As Bradley said, with every passing day, Kimi knows you better.
While listening to one of these streams, Angela stumbles upon a recording where the muffled voices draw her attention. She tries to hear the voice behind the music and finds out that a woman was being molested. She doesn’t know who the woman was or who was molesting her. But she wants to help. She contacts her Romanian colleague named Darius (Alex Debranko), who is drunk most of the time and often passes sordid comments under the pretext of being coquettish, which Angela ignores. He helps her to log into the interface and get the complete recordings of the lady. Angela is devastated to know that the lady was murdered, but she was smart enough to put Kimi on all this time, in the hope that somebody might find it and lift the veil of anonymity.
‘Kimi’ Ending Explained- Is Angela Able To Expose The Murderer?
Angela tries to reach out to the authorities within the corporation for some help. She is not ready to just leave the issue behind and move ahead. She had access to the recordings, and she knew that they were proof enough to put the criminal behind bars. But nobody was ready to listen to her because the guy who raped the women was none other than the CEO, Bradley Hasling, himself. Angela is chased by hired assassins who try to kill her. Another neighbor named Kevin comes to help her as he used to keep an eye on her from his window. He saw that, like him, Angela, too, never moved out of the house. So when she decided to do so, to give the recordings to the FBI, then he knew that something was not right.
Kevin tries to save her but gets stabbed by the hired assassins. At this point, when all hope was lost, the faceless companion came to the rescue. Angela’s mom called her. The assassins don’t intend on picking up the call, but Angela, through her voice command, asks Kimi to pick up the call. The mother sees the faces of the killers. Angela then commands the lights to be dimmed. In a heroic Kill Bill-ish manner, she manages to execute the executioners themselves. She calls 911 and hands over the recordings, putting Mr. Hasling behind bars.
The ending of “Kimi” has an eccentric humor to it. It feels quite simplified and convenient, yet it’s engrossing and leaves you content. There is no pretense when it comes to Angela, and the screenplay complements it quite effectively.
“Kimi” emerges from the stalemate genre, which has recently started experiencing a lack of unique possibilities. Like its protagonist, it keeps pulsating vigorously throughout its tenure.
“Kimi” is a 2022 drama thriller film directed by Steven Soderbergh.