Emily Mertens

Thrilling, captivating and outright gory – Westworld so far

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Recently we’re seeing a trend in television series being created based on popular films. This trend has produced Scream, based on the horror movies, Taken is currently being turned into a series, and the new show Westworld, is based on Michael Crichton’s 1973 film of the same name. The feature-length Westworld was nominated for three awards, proving a great success, and the new series is definitely doing it justice. But just a warning, do not watch whilst eating your tea – the gushing of blood sprayed across the screen might make it difficult, and I’m speaking from experience here, spaghetti and meatballs will never be the same.

The sci-fi fantasy series by Game Of Thrones creators HBO is set in a futuristic theme park staffed by robots, or “hosts”, where rich guests are able to live out some of life’s greatest western fantasies including treasure hunts, prostitution, and a good ol’ showdown.

However, the hosts are programmed so that they are unable to kill the human guests. But excitingly, a new update causes the hosts to begin acting out of character – so who knows what could eventually happen?

Stars such as Anthony Hopkins, who plays Dr Robert Ford, and Ed Harris, who plays the sinister ‘Man In Black’, successfully play their characters to maximum potential. Even I’m scared that Ed Harris will show up in my back garden and start shooting at me for no reason.

The realism of the hosts, and the sense of attachment created due to this, is what makes Westworld so unique.  The first host we meet is Dolores and it is shocking to find out that she is not real. She is one of the first characters to show signs of realising the truth about her ‘world’ and I am rooting for her, I want her to be free.

But Lee Sizemore, the park’s narrative writer, is a different story. His melodramatic acting, swearing and aggression does not match the look of his character. Thumbs down on casting here, HBO.

HBO’s version of Westworld is a thrilling and captivating take on the 1973 film, using sci-fi effects to move the film swiftly into the modern era. The mystery and use of cliff-hangers are enough to leave me right on the edge of my seat, begging for the next episode. Westworld is aired every Tuesday, 9pm, on Sky Atlantic.

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