Profound, captivating, mysterious, pretentious – these are all words which could be used to describe Peter Moorhead’s cyberpunk thriller, Murder. Regardless of where you stand however, it is most certainly a thought provoking experience unlike any other.
Murder‘s protagonist, Lieutenant Motomeru Minori, is called out to a crime scene where a man has been violently killed. No biological clues or evidence has been left behind though, making it almost impossible to find the killer. Not that Motomeru’s colleagues are all that concerned, of course. This is just another day at the office for them. Another loss of life is of no real importance, so long as they can still clock out at the end of the day.
Murder‘s various scenes present optional and critical scenery for you to interact with, in a point and click “look at this, now go there” style. Talking to citizens and humanoid robots reveals a world where life is cheap and disposable, possessions are of the utmost importance, and where contentedness seems forever fleeting. There are definitely parallels with today’s world.
Moorhead’s depiction of Neo Tokyo is striking. It’s a world where human life and robots are at an intersection. For every human living life and consuming autonomously, there’s a machine reaching sentience and becoming aware of itself. Aware of its servitude to human kind. The tables have turned, and only the robots have realised The impact of this awakening has potentially far-reaching repercussions for all of mankind, yet most people are too wrapped in themselves to notice.
During its short 20 minute run time, Murder poses numerous uncomfortable questions – many more than it has time to answer. But perhaps that’s the point?