11th Mar2020

‘Jexi’ Review (Amazon Prime)

by Chris Cummings

Stars: Adam Devine, Alexandra Shipp, Rose Byrne, Ron Funches, Charlyne Yi, Michael Peña, Wanda Sykes, Kid Cudi, Justin Hartley | Written and Directed by Jon Lucas, Scott Moore

jexi-poster

Written and directed by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore, Jexi is an Amazon Prime original movie that is part sci-fi and part comedy, with the main focus being on the silly comedy side of things. That, for me, is both problematic and a shame, and I’ll tell you why in a moment.

Jexi follows Phil (Adam Devine), a guy who is single, down on his luck in the romance and social departments, and is struggling to go further in his job. He needs a new phone, and when he buys one and switches it on, he finds this new operating system, a new AI named Jexi who he gives permission to pretty much take control of things, without realising just how much of his life Jexi will actually thrust herself into. What follows is Phil finding that Jexi is able to help him reach the highs he never imagined in his life before eventually becoming jealous of him and controlling of his decisions.

Really, Jexi has some cool ideas going for it, but I think it missed some great opportunities. It felt to me, throughout, like this should have been a sci-fi horror film, with Jexi becoming a pyschotic AI who goes to dark and disturbing levels to control Phil, but it didn’t go there. It was silly and while things to get out of hand, it still feels subtle and a little bland. The comedy doesn’t always hit, so I found myself wishing they had gone along a more disturbing route.

Devine is fine as Phil, a bit of a “loser” who doesn’t know how to manage his life until his phone tells him how, but there aren’t really any other characters to care about. Jexi, voiced by Rose Byrne, is decent, but she’s no Scarlett Johansson in “Her”. There’s just things lacking here, chances to do something truly original and exciting are ignores and brushed off for what becomes a rom-com with a twist.

A passable, at-times humorous cyber-comedy, Jexi missed on more occasions than it hit, for me, and while it’s very watchable, I found it frustrating due to what it could have been. A shame, really.

**½  2.5/5

Jexi is available to watch now on Amazon Prime Video.

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