(2001)

David is 11 years old. He weighs 60 pounds. He is 4 feet, 6 inches tall. He has brown hair. His love is real. But he is not.

David, a robotic boy—the first of his kind programmed to love—is adopted as a test case by a Cybertronics employee and his wife. Though he gradually becomes their child, a series of unexpected circumstances make this life impossible for David. Without final acceptance by humans or machines, David embarks on a journey to discover where he truly belongs, uncovering a world in which the line between robot and machine is both vast and profoundly thin.

I bought this on DVD many years ago, convinced I had never seen it. I finally got around to watching it, and it wasn’t until I reached the robot demolition circus (words I bet I have never seen in the same sentence before) that I realized I had watched this movie before. That is a memorable sequence.
In many respects I thought the movie was well made: the special effects, the deep thinking behind the plot, and the writing was mostly good. It almost felt like it was covering too much ground, and I felt there were a few lapses. I will mention only one, and try not to give anything away. There is a pivotal scene where John Hurt’s character is with the AI child David. It took a lot of effort to get David there, so what does the guy do/ he leaves David alone and unchaperoned. And the end of the movie turns on that. Why would he wander off like that except to serve the plot?
Still, the film, mirroring and projecting the story of Pinocchio into the future, was quite an achievement. I liked it, but not as much as a lot of other Spielberg efforts.

Amblin Entertainment, Stanley Kubrick Productions, DreamWorks Pictures, Warner Bros. Pictures by Steven Spielberg, Brian Aldiss, Ian Watson.
Stars: Haley Joel Osment, Jude Law, Frances O'Connor.

Genres: Drama, Sci-Fi

Keywords: artificial intelligence prophecy prostitute loss of loved one android extraterrestrial technology ice age adoption fairy tale prosecution gigolo hologram dystopia alien robot destiny capture doppelgänger robot boy

06/29/2001

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