The Circle, starring Emma Watson as ‘Mae’, is a movie that reveals the true workings of a popular tech company. The story begins with Mae landing a job at one of the largest and most influential tech companies, The Circle. Mae comes from a family that is not especially stable financially. Her parents have health problems and struggle to pay for what they need to pay for. Mae starts as a lower ranking employee but climbs the ladder relatively quickly and shows her capability to work hard.
Mae is able to raise her ranking very high and begins interacting with coworkers in order to raise it even higher. She became friends with a coworker named Annie. Others that become significant include Jared, Kalden, and Francis. While meeting new people Mae interacts with a few that don’t paint The Circle in the same great light as everyone else.
One night Mae steals a kayak and nearly drowns in the water on The Circle’s territory. Luckily she is saved, but the entire company is notified of it and she is put on display. The CEO, Bailey, convinces Mae to go “transparent” to ensure she doesn’t misbehave again. This means that everything she does will be broadcasted for anyone to watch. This company believes everything should be transparent in the modern world. She seemed to be brainwashed into going through with this because she did not fully understand the cons. She quickly went viral and everyone watched her every moment. She also quickly damaged many of her relationships, including with her parents. The cons continued to escalate until a drama filled scene where her lifelong friend Mercer ultimately dies due to a stunt performed by The Circle. After this, she and Jared devise and plan to retaliate. Mae returns to transparency and meets with The Circle’s founders, Bailey and Eamon. In front of everyone, she convinces them to go transparent as well. After much resistance, their data is exposed. Everyone sees that they are immoral and nothing is private.
Overall, this movie had very interesting social commentary. It could easily be compared to companies and movements we are seeing in our current world. Privacy is a large point of debate in our world and in this movie. We love to lower our privacy, post our every move, and even share our location with friends. This movie made me have second thoughts on that. Because technology is rapidly evolving we don’t always take a step back and realize if it is beneficial or not. Facebook and many other companies are continuing to invade our privacy and we must determine how far it will go before we end up with an ending like The Circle.