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Matt Damon Gets Harassed by a Robot in First ‘Elysium’ Clip

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Neill Blomkamp‘s Elysium could be described any number of ways- gritty, futuristic, explosion-filled- but ‘funny’ is probably not the first (or even 20th) adjective to spring to mind. Well, prepare to be amazed, as the first clip released from the film (courtesy of Yahoo! Movies) shows off Elysium‘s lighter side.

It’s not what you’d call a laugh riot, but there is something bitterly funny in Matt Damon‘s (as protagonist Max DeCosta) frustration over the poor quality of robot service in 2154. It feels very close to the little smidgens of black humor found in Blomkamp’s last feature, District 9 (especially the tabloid pieces that implied a sordid affair between the main character and the film’s alien life).

Check out the clip below.

The most remarkable thing about this clip isn’t Damon’s robo-sarcasm. It’s the level of detail found in every single frame. Despite the inclusion of robots, the setting feels very much like any other public office in a bad area- scrawled with graffiti and crammed with people who require a level of assistance this office can’t possibly supply. And the robotic official  seems to have just the right mix of future tech (knowing Damon’s identity as soon as he sits down; measuring his heart rate and offering a calming pill or two) and the same obnoxious robocall technology we have today. With every passing look, Elysium seems to get better and better.

Elysium hits theaters on August 9, 2013 and stars Damon as well as Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley, Alice Braga and Diego Luna.

Adam Bellotto is a freelancer writer from Virginia who moved to California because movies are super neat. His work can also be read at Perihelion Science Fiction and Starpulse, among other places.

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