Susie Allnut
Nicole Sperling
April 23, 2015 AT 12:00 PM EDT

It looks like writer-director Alex Garland has a new hit on his hands. His sci-fi thriller Ex Machina, starring Domnhall Gleeson, Alicia Vikander and Oscar Isaac, already has racked up more than $1 million in its first two weeks of limited release and generated rave reviews from critics across the country. It’s also served as a conversation-starter with audiences eager to discuss the limits of artifical intelligence as our relationship with technology grows ever more inter-dependent. 

On the eve of the film’s national expansion, we talked to Garland, the screenwriter behind other conversation-starters including Sunshine and Never Let Me Go, about his $15 million movie for Inside Movies on EW Radio, Sirius XM channel 105.

Check out some highlights from the interview below, including Garland explaining the themes he’s exploring in Ex Machina

Garland only might have had $15 million to work with, but the creation of Ava, his A.I. robot played with stunning specificity by Vikander, is a hugely successful part of the movie. Here is Garland on her creation:

Turns out Garland loves Isaac as much as we do. (If you haven’t seen Ex Machina yet, go for the dance scene alone.) Here is Garland espousing the merits of the actor, his film’s secret weapon: 

Garland has toiled in the business for years, working successfully with many partners including Danny Boyle (28 Days Later, Sunshine). Now it looks like he’s going to launch his second directorial effort shortly. Here he is talking about what’s next: 

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