Mae Holland (Emma Watson) wants to change her life, so she accepts a job at the company her friend, Annie (Karen Gillan), works at called The Circle. A tech company, The Circle is on the cutting edge of technology and social media, pushing its agenda to make everything known and nothing secret.
Based on David Eggers and directed by James Ponsoldt, the film aims for something higher than just entertainment, warning us of a time – not unlike the present – where nothing is private. Whether it’s the personal details about our lives we share on social media (is that really private?) or companies making accessible to others what we think they’ve kept private, the truth gets out in ways we don’t expect.
These decisions are made at The Circle by CEO Tom Stenton (Patton Oswalt) and co-founder Eamon Bailey (Tom Hanks), a Steve Jobs-like figure, while the rest of the employees swarm around, happily lapping up what they decree. And then there’s a third creative, Ty (John Boyega), lurking in the background, as part of the tension that surrounds the company.
What you take from Eggers’ storyline (he adapted the screenplay, too) will vary, based on your perspective of technology and social media. But the truth is, there are several warnings there that share visions of what we should be aware of every time we plug in.
Special features include a four-part featurette called “No More Secrets: Completing the Circle”, “The Future Won’t Wait: Design and Technology,” and “A True Original: Remembering Bill Paxton,” honoring the actor who passed away this year.