AFRAID Trailer: John Cho And Katherine Waterston’s Smart Home Turns Deadly In Blumhouse AI Thriller

John Cho AI

by Jordan King |
Published on

Have you ever thought about how you can’t spell ‘afraid’ without AI? Because writer-director Chris Weitz (About A Boy, The Golden Compass) certainly has. His new technophobe triggering thriller AFRAID — formerly titled They Listen — sees John Cho and Katherine Waterston star as a married couple whose lives are turned upside down when they sign their family up to trial a (quite literally) killer new home AI assistant. Check out the sinister first trailer for the Blumhouse movie below;

Don't mind us, we're just quietly yeeting every one of our smart devices into the sea after that — yikes! Right from the get-go, there's sketchy vibes surrounding AIA, the smart home assistant Curtis (Cho) and his family receive here. “I’m not crazy about having them everywhere,” says Curtis’ wife (Waterston) as little eyes are mounted around her home. And so she shouldn't be. In this first look at the film, the soft-spoken AIA very quickly cranks through the gears from 'overly helpful android with a strange mommy complex' to 'possessive harbinger of death and destruction', interfering with Curtis and his wife's kids' lives in increasingly disturbing ways — including straight up kebabing a guy in his own car for supposedly threatening her chosen family's peace. “There is something very wrong with AIA,” says Curtis during the fiery climax of the trailer. We'll say!

Here’s the official synopsis for the film, which also stars David Dastmalchian, Keith Carradine, and Riki Lindhome: “Curtis (Cho) and his family are selected to test a revolutionary new home device: a digital family assistant called AIA. Taking smart home to the next level, once the unit and all its sensors and cameras are installed in their home, AIA seems able to do it all. She learns the family’s behaviors and begins to anticipate their needs. And she can make sure nothing – and no one – gets in her family’s way.”

AFRAID (and yes, its title is stylised in full caps with an italicised ‘AI’) is the latest in an increasingly long line of contemporary rogue AI movies that’s included the likes of Chucky reboot Child's Play, M3GAN and its upcoming spin-off SOULM8TE, The Mitchells Vs The Machines, and the most recent Mission: Impossible. We’ll find out whether Weitz’ take on evil electronics is worth the w_ai_t or if it’s a big ol’ f_ai_l when AFRAID hits cinemas on 30 August.

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