I decided to watch The Circle for my movie review because the trailer caught my attention when it first aired. Unfortunately, I do not have time in my schedule to go to the movies, so the movie assignment was the perfect opportunity for me to watch this film.
The Circle is set in the near future, and dubbed a tech-thriller. The film stars Emma Watson, a 20-something year old, who lands a job at a large tech company called The Circle. This opportunity appears to be her big break, but the company quickly starts to overstep its bounds with data collection. Emma Watson’s character, Mae Holland, volunteers to livestream every moment of her life to the world wide web. This decision starts to effect her personal relationships, when her friends and family do not agree to have their lives broadcasted. She slowly starts to question the ethics behind the data they collect, which puts her in a peculiar situation. She must decide whether the work she is doing is for the better or the worse. The positive side effects of the technology are seen during Mae’s SoulSearch presentation. During the presentation, the community comes together to catch a killer, but the experiment turns sour when they try to locate her friend Mercer. As a result, Mae decides the best business practice is for the CEO to become completely transparent.
The film shows what could happen if large companies intervene in their consumers everyday lives. The Circle emphasizes data collection on its clients and employees. They claim the data collection is to better understand the consumer. However, a company does not need to know every facet of their consumers lives to be successful. When companies start to overstep their bounds in people’s personal lives, it can have negative side effects (as seen in The Circle). The government plays a smaller role in the film, but tries to combat the privacy violations through regulations. In the end, the CEO comes under attack and the only recon The Circle can do is become 100% transparent with their consumers. While data collection is important to some degree, being transparent with customers is what truly strengthens a business.