Having read the other reviews here, I came to this edit with high expectations, and I was not disappointed. I'm a fan of the theatrical cut, but I also wished the movie ended earlier. I've since read some reviews that made me appreciate the original ending more, but having now seen this edit, I think the ending here is quite satisfying.
I also appreciated the extended dance sequence and the minor trims that made the characters more consistent. This edit is rock solid, the only issue I noticed which others have commented on is the artifacts in certain scenes. A larger encode would make this a perfect edit for me. Well done!
Just finished watching this edit. My evaluation: flawless visual and audio editing, and no holes in the narrative or theme work (goodbye, God). Like watching an official, studio-released film. The video quality wasn’t perfect – darker scenes suffered from some slight artificating – but that’s just surface. Oscar Isaac dancing was fun, and the new footage didn’t disrupt the film’s pacing at all. The film’s original ending was too sentimental and too tidy. I found thecuddlyninja’s new ending to be far superior. A thought-provoking, entertaining film, and a great edit.
I really enjoyed Ex Machina when I first watched it. The thing that stood out to me most was the ending. I thought to myself man they should have ended this sooner. thecuddlyninja's edit deals with this exact issue. The new ending was good, my personal preference would have been when Eva steps out of the hallway and the door closes -> end credits. Still the spot where thecuddlyninja chose to end the edit is a vast improvement over the theatrical ending.
As far as the extended dance sequence. The original dance sequence was such an unexpected, funny and creepy scene. I had read an interview with Oscar Isaac about how there was much more to the dance than what was shown. thecuddlyninja flawlessly inserts the extended scene into his edit.
Removal of the God talk. I actually didn't mind this in the theatrical version. I understand thecuddlyninja's reasoning behind his choice though. The cuts were seamless to my eyes and ears.
Visual and Audio editing, as already mentioned, pretty damn good.
One gripe is the video quality. The picture looks a little soft (I'll have to check my DVD to see if this is inherent to the source material). Also some of the darker scenes, and the scenes that were red (i.e. the power failure scenes) the quality seemed to noticeably drop. Still overall the majority of the edit looked good.
Good job on this edit! This is a fine example of an edit where less is more.