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I, Robot

Genre: Action / Sci-Fi
Rated: PG-13
Directed by: Alex Proyas
Starring: Will Smith, Bridget Moynahan, James Cromwell, Bruce Greenwood
Released by: 20th Century Fox

In Short: Even though this Sci-Fi summer romp with robots did provide a few chuckles and Will Smith and the special effects are eye candy, we expect the video in stores soon.

Oy, Robots!
The Vey of the Vorld in 2035

The year is 2035, and robots are just as common as cell phones. Created to serve and protect humans, these robots are “guaranteed” to be violence-free...or so people think, but Detective Del Spooner (Will Smith) is no dummy.

Set in a futuristic Chicago, "I, Robot" tells the story of one man’s struggle to prove that these seemingly gentle machines are responsible for the mysterious death of the famous scientist (James Cromwell) who created them in the first place. As the investigation unravels, we remain uncertain as to whether the robots are to blame or the seedy multi-million dollar company promoting them, headed by a sinister CEO (Bruce Greenwood) we love to hate.

One of the characters we love to love is the charming Sonny, an overly emotional, specially built RS5 unit robot, who questions his purpose in life (voice by Alan Tudyk). The film also stars fashion model turned actress Bridget Moynahan, as the uptight “robot psychologist," who mellows after roughing it up in her love/hate relationship with Smith’s Det. Spooner.

Australian director Alex Proyas (“The Crow," “Dark City”) does a praiseworthy job of bringing to life famed sci-fi writer Isaac Asimov”s 1950's book I, Robot. Although the film is loosely based on the bestseller, it is not a direct adaptation. The movie focuses on a few characters and is loaded with quite decent special effects and megawatt decibels to keep the viewer alert. Product placement is taken to new heights with the likes of Audi and FedEx.

As executive producer of the film, Will Smith is no stranger to science-fiction thrillers. It all started with the huge success of “Independence Day," followed by the even more profitable “Men in Black” series. Smith’s physical training for “Ali” certainly paid off, as he showcases his sexy muscles in this “tough, yet sensitive guy” role, which actually suits him well: a misunderstood, but likable guy, whose humor makes the movie a pleasure to watch. However, if you are looking for intelligent dialogue and character development, we suggest renting “Six Degrees of Separation," without a doubt one of Smith’s best performances.

Beneath the surface of this testosterone-loaded flick, there are layers of deeper questions that leave us pondering "what if?" Aren’t good movies supposed to make us think? "I, Robot" succeeds in doing just so, along with giving us a few chuckles and twists and turns along the way.

(Updated: 09/25/06)

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