The Paw Print
Mike Cahill’s 2014 Independent film “I Origins” is the journey of a molecular biologist’s study of the human eye. The film explores a scientist’s scientific and spiritual beliefs. Dr. Ian Grey (Michael Pitt) is obsessed with the human eye. He takes individual pictures of people’s eyes that he finds interesting, and he becomes obsessed with a model, Sofi (Astrid Berges-Frisbey), whose eyes fascinate him. The human eye has been one of the elements of biology that makes us unique because we all have eye biometrics that are specific to us. Dr. Grey wants to get to the bottom of the evolution of the eye. He works with his colleagues Kenny (Steven Yeun) and Karen (Brit Marling).
Ian meets Sofi at a dress up party where he falls in love with her masked face and her eyes, which he takes a picture of for his collection. They make love and she leaves without another word. He searches for her relentlessly but eventually gives up. He eventually spots her eyes on a billboard that is advertising mascara. He tracks her down and they meet face to face. They have a quick romance followed by a marriage proposal.
Ian and Sofi’s relationship comes to a shocking end and the loss is devastatingly felt. Seven years later Ian and Karen are married and expecting their first child. When their child is born they are asked if they want their child’s eye to be documented in a vast database of eye photos. The discovery from the eye pictures of their son leads Ian to India where he makes an amazing discovery of a lifetime.
Various religions around the world view the eye as proof of the divine creator. Some cultures view the eye as a window to the soul or even the thumbprint of a creator. Ian and Karen are searching together for a genetic switch that prompts the creation of photosensitive cells. This discovery would disprove a long-standing argument for the existence of God. The argument is that natural objects, like the human eye, are inherently too complex to have arisen through evolution.
If you are looking for a fantasy/science fiction and drama film this is a good movie for you. The story and action, however, is a little drawn out throughout the majority of the movie. The story doesn’t pick up until the last half hour or so. The movie does leave you thinking about the afterlife and how one life can go on forever. This origin story leaves things open at the end leaving the opportunity for sequels or spinoffs. This 116-minute movie is how destiny and love can lead us to different revelations that we wouldn’t have been able to reach without them. The “I Origins” movie leaves much to be desired for some parts of the movie but it also leaves the audience with a very romanticized and fascinating ending.