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Overall Rating
3

Awesome: 9.45%
Worth A Look: 23.38%
Just Average34.33%
Pretty Crappy: 22.89%
Sucks: 9.95%

11 reviews, 135 user ratings


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I, Robot
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by EricDSnider

"I, Robot, being of dull mind and body..."
3 stars

Will Smith is the king of the Independence Day cineplex, able to draw in crowds and entertain even tough critics with his wise-guy antics and action heroics. Fourth of July belongs to the Fresh Prince! Because this is 1997, right? What, it's not? 2004? Oh. Well, then who does Will Smith think he is, barging in here like this?!

Gone are the days of "Independence Day," "Men in Black" and even "Wild Wild West" (which, though scorned, made $114 million -- unprofitable, but still watched by a lot of people). "Men in Black II" and "Bad Boys II" tried to recapture Smith's hold on mid-summer movie-going, and each earned (well, made; "earned" is something else) well over $100 million. But discerning viewers noted that both films felt overly familiar. There was the strong sense that Smith was going back to the well too often, and that producers were creating movies to abet him in doing so.

This disappointing trend continues with "I, Robot," which is yet another science-fiction story in which Will Smith makes yet another series of wise-cracks while shooting more guns and blowing more things up. Does he say, "Aw, HELL no!" in this picture? Obviously.

Based rather loosely on Isaac Asimov's iconic short stories and adapted by Akiva Goldsman ("A Beautiful Mind," "Lost in Space," "Batman & Robin") and Jeff Vintar ("Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within"), the film is set in 2035 in Chicago. Robots have become commonplace in American households, used as personal butlers, nannies and assistants, all identical in appearance and looking vaguely like Oscar statues. U.S. Robotics reports that with the rollout of the new models in a few days, there will be one robot for every five humans.

Smith plays Del Spooner, a police officer who doesn't trust robots, even though one has never, ever, ever committed a crime or hurt a person (they're hardwired to obey all human instructions and never to inflict harm). Spooner is so old-fashioned his CD player works via remote control, not voice command, and he loves "retro" tennis shoes like the Converse All-Stars. Coincidentally, his favorites are the 2004 models -- the very year in which this film is being released! Why, you could probably go out TODAY and buy a pair of the very shoes he adores!!!

(He's also so old-fashioned that he showers without a curtain and with the bathroom door open, though maybe that's not so much old-fashioned as exhibitionist, as he knows a movie camera is liable to pan slowly across the open doorway while he's in there.)

Anyway, Spooner's mistrust of robots starts to seem more credible when Dr. Alfred Lanning (James Cromwell), founder of U.S. Robotics, is killed, and the only possible perpetrator is a robot (voiced by Alan Tudyk). Lawrence Robertson (Bruce Greenwood), the shifty head of the company, denies that any of his droids are capable of such a thing -- but of course he'd deny it, what with the impending product rollout and all. Generally speaking, people don't buy something if they think it might kill them (cigarettes and motorcycles notwithstanding). Could this one robot's actions, if true, indicate a larger plan -- an uprising, even?! As Will Smith would (and does) say, "Aw, HELL no!"

Spooner pursues the facts, against the wishes of his lieutenant (Chi McBride), who probably calls him a "loose cannon," or at least implies it, and with the semi-cooperative help of the lovely Susan Calvin (Bridget Moynahan), a U.S. Robotics employee whose job is to "make the robots look more human" (i.e., creepy, and P.S. mission accomplished). The closer he gets to the truth, the more dangerous things get for him personally, and for his beloved grandmother (Adrian L. Ricard), and so on and so forth.

(I was amused when Granny said, of Spooner's ex-wife, "When I was coming up, people didn't get married, get divorced, then not speak to each other." But this is 2035, and Granny looks like she was born around 1965 ... which means that people did, in fact, get divorced and not speak to each other anymore when she was "coming up." It happened a lot, in fact. This is an example of a curious syndrome you see occasionally in films set in the future, where the senior citizens act as if they'd been raised in the 1930s and '40s, rather than in the 1980s or the 2060s or whenever. But I digress.)

Directed by Alex Proyas ("Dark City," "The Crow"), this is a big, soulless action film. It made me feel a lot like "The Day After Tomorrow" did: It's fun, sure, but uninspired. We've seen it all before -- the glib cop, the spectacular pursuits, the ludicrous plot twists. All of these are entertaining elements, but they need some spark to them, some wit or innovation or freshness. "I, Robot" lets Will Smith do his old Will Smith thing yet again, with only the minimum level of actual entertainment to dress it up.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=10202&reviewer=247
originally posted: 07/19/04 18:07:31
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User Comments

10/06/16 BillyBobJones itwas k fam 5 stars
12/03/14 Ayana Pendergrass I Robot captivates me each time I watch! Great movie 5 stars
1/18/12 Marc DC Not a big W. Smith fan, but this was surprisingly one of his best. 4 stars
11/17/10 warmpotato Bleh. The script makes little sense, and Will Smith was horribly miscast. 2 stars
11/11/10 AlleyPhern If Will Smith was not in it, I would have given it 3 stars instead 2 stars
7/11/09 the dork knight Cromwell deserves a bigger role than that of a creepy hologram, but ok. 4 stars
8/11/08 Shaun Wallner Started off Great but then it started to drag on. 2 stars
12/19/07 Pamela White could be better 3 stars
11/17/07 Tee Not great, but Will smith is always watchable. Effects are good. 3 stars
10/14/07 fools♫gold If it's Alex Proyas, it must be somewhat good... 4 stars
8/21/07 movie crazed ok movie, worth a look though the plot seemed to be kinda confusing 4 stars
7/11/07 MaDmAN I actually liked this movie, you'll watch it, then forget it, but it's entertaining 4 stars
4/01/07 R.W.Welch Overblown in places but not bad overall. Smith shows the right touch. 3 stars
3/19/07 Stanley Thai Overly a good popcorn entertainment 4 stars
3/07/07 man good movie 4 stars
3/04/07 Bitchflaps Will Smith is irritating, Moynahan is deadwood, can't think of anything I liked about it. 1 stars
11/10/06 Henry fucking bullshit 1 stars
9/11/06 Charles Tatum Nicely updated, Smith is lots of fun 4 stars
8/26/06 Claaaaaaaaaaaiiiiiirrrrrrreeeeeeee!!!!!! This movie is sooo boring and horrible! had to watch it for robotics! 1 stars
8/09/06 Dragon The Artist Another medieocre popcorn flick; just good enough to follow n' watch. 3 stars
7/02/06 MikeT Would have like it to be more meaningful, but is great as an action flick. 4 stars
6/19/06 Carol Baker pretty good for animated cartoon. Had good 3 D look. 4 stars
5/30/06 Wanker Should have won all the Golden Globe awards for bad movie. 1 stars
5/26/06 YYY Acting and dialogue are so bad 2 stars
4/03/06 okierazorbacker Remarkably dumb but looks great in a sanitized, videogame kind of way 3 stars
4/01/06 JRE just good 4 stars
2/06/06 Anthony A Great Sci-Fi movie 4 stars
1/03/06 Steve Newman An enjoyable couple of hours watching this film - its ok 4 stars
10/10/05 Quigley I love this movie. awesome sci-fi story and CG, robots were stunning, smith was funny. see 5 stars
10/03/05 Sully blah 3 stars
9/26/05 millersxing Chi-town 2035 is 2 stars
9/21/05 Jonathon Holmes fun from start to finish 4 stars
9/13/05 bbbr shit, kiss my ass 1 stars
8/31/05 ES Not as bad as was thought, cool FX, but the trailers gave too much away 3 stars
8/07/05 glabber Not bad, not great, just average in every department, except FX 3 stars
8/07/05 fnia fleissig I love will smith, but this film was turgid and pointless 2 stars
7/26/05 Malaka Waste of time, waste of effort, waste of Fucking money, what was smith thinking? 1 stars
7/25/05 Eric Rollins Robots too creepy looking to be sympathetic. Sort of like Will Smith. 3 stars
7/10/05 slanes Enjoyed the movie, held my interest, good special effects, and Will Smith is great. 4 stars
7/02/05 Charlie Great Special Effects, And An Interesting Idea. 4 stars
6/20/05 tony Great adventure movie both for kids and adults. You all will love it! 4 stars
6/14/05 Quigley one of the best sci-fi flicks ever birthed. the robots are so awesome. gotta see it! 5 stars
6/07/05 Darcy average interpretation of a complex story 4 stars
6/04/05 Denise Gannon even Will Smith is getting tired of acting like Will Smith... where's Blade Runner 2? 1 stars
5/18/05 CB Cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
5/01/05 Valerie Excellent Movie, Excellent Special Effects 5 stars
4/23/05 Quigley some of the most stunning visual effects ever seen makes this better than The Matrix 5 stars
4/14/05 Indrid Cold CGI and Matrix-style slomo has long since ceased to amaze, and a dull plot can't save it. 3 stars
3/24/05 Mel Gibson AW HELL NAWWWWW!!! 4 stars
3/14/05 albert VERY GOOD MOVIE 5 stars
2/04/05 Valerie White interesting 3 stars
2/04/05 LilyM Forgettable; didn't deliver on story or action. 3 stars
2/01/05 lisa w It was better than the previews made it look. Lots of cool special effects too 4 stars
1/27/05 Jack Scallops Great action, needs a better script though 4 stars
1/27/05 New Jersey Rules Fun ass shit. 4 stars
1/11/05 Ron Newbold I don't think Issac Asimov would have envisioned I, Robot quite like this 3 stars
1/11/05 HL Dumb, But Visually Great..So, Do the Dube and Watch it! 5 stars
12/30/04 Tjalda L. Schiel Wowza special effects. Who cares if the plot is a mess. 4 stars
12/27/04 Samuel it's okay, nothing special... 3 stars
12/22/04 farnqwo product placement & dumbass plot 1 stars
12/20/04 axtion movie fan man vs robots\\great f/x in exciting sci/fi one of 2004's better films 4 stars
12/04/04 jonny boy cmon it wasnt that bad(look at the matrix sequels lmao) 3 stars
11/21/04 ad pretty scenery 4 stars
11/14/04 keithers.. How many times has this plot been done....to many to count 2 stars
11/11/04 Andrea yawn...boring, boring...boring. Will Smith NOT BELIEVABLE! 2 stars
11/09/04 Dan Van Zan Awesome Action Sequences manage to hold the movie inspite of a weak storyline 4 stars
11/04/04 Duncan yes Will unbutton the shirt and go back to action, Ali didnt get you the oscar 1 stars
9/15/04 TeeJay Terrible. And I will never be able to wear black Converse again. 1 stars
9/06/04 Ame blower ITS TOTAL SHIT 1 stars
8/30/04 The Predator watchable, good entertainment, it was ok 3 stars
8/28/04 HitmanThomas Better then I thought it would be 4 stars
8/27/04 Tristynn Sonny stole the show. I was pleasantly surprised by this movie...very original. 5 stars
8/25/04 Littlepurch Wel I loved it.As a fan of Minority Report,I feel this is a clever tribute with gr8 action! 5 stars
8/23/04 Sam Was expecting a good Sci-Fi Movie...not as mentioned, Black Vs. White. 1 stars
8/20/04 S.F Enjoyable. Haven't read the book. Kinda like the fact that it actually had a storyline! 4 stars
8/17/04 Destiny Pifer Good sci-fi flick will smith did a good job 4 stars
8/16/04 khurshid I kindda like it, need some love scene between spooner and Dr.calvin 4 stars
8/15/04 Peter James Excellent CGI, but is that really what the world will look like in thirty years...no way 3 stars
8/13/04 Obi Wan Good Summer Fun! Wasn't bad. CGI was very good and the film did move 4 stars
8/13/04 David Rare. I enjoyed it. 5 stars
8/11/04 Simon Khalil The perfect mix of action, comedy, and futuristic technology 4 stars
8/10/04 Clayton Smith The ending was a shocker, why return the robot army back to unlocked containers outside the 3 stars
8/10/04 Anthony G I sure want to buy some CONVERSE 2004, AND HAVE THEM SHIPPED FROM FED EX 1 stars
8/08/04 Jim Good stuff. Robots most compelling characters though! 4 stars
8/05/04 Mix Master Mason Will Smith has played this same painful character in every movie he's been in. Will sucks! 1 stars
8/03/04 Michael Very interesting, eye-popping, glad i didn't read books first... I would pay full price! 5 stars
8/02/04 P.Rodriguez Avoid like the plague. 1 stars
8/01/04 SIr Spam-a-lot Better than I expected (thought kinda simlar to ANIMATRIX: THE RENAISSANCE PART 1) 3 stars
8/01/04 Rocky Swarming killer robots made Will Smith barely tolerable for once 4 stars
7/30/04 alien assassin much better than "Bicentennial Man", but a long way behind "Blade Runner" 4 stars
7/28/04 michaelb14 a little less of the will smith persona would have been better but still... 4 stars
7/28/04 Zefram Mann Fairly intelligent story. Good effects. If you don't hate Smith, you'll probably like this. 4 stars
7/27/04 Mike Devans Average.. give it a whirl 3 stars
7/27/04 toonz not bad 4 stars
7/25/04 Agent Sands 10, 15 times better than I thought it would be. Really smart & fun. 5 stars
7/25/04 othree 2035? my ass, crappy story, Will looks buff, a DVD renter! 3 stars
7/25/04 M The fresh prince still cant act and he might have great abs, worth a look though. 3 stars
7/25/04 Pure RAGE... It was pretty good and the Max Payne styled shootouts were great! 5 stars
7/25/04 Nikolai The epilogue blended well with the screaming fat ladies and Ford van swiping me homebound 3 stars
7/23/04 buddy garrett No inspiration for this movie 1 stars
7/23/04 E Loved it. Real fun movie! 5 stars
7/22/04 malcolm basically a 2nd rate Blade Runner, and Smith is no Harrison Ford, still fun though 4 stars
7/22/04 Frink If you've seen one Will Smith action movie, you've seen them all... 3 stars
7/21/04 Virginia Clarke Exciting and frightening, itt made me think about the risks of artificial intelligence. 5 stars
7/21/04 ad it's actually ok - spectacular enough 4 stars
7/21/04 Nobody Laura- I hate to break it to you but Asimov has been dead for over 10 years. 4 stars
7/21/04 Kristina Sucked harder than two gays at an Nsync concert. 1 stars
7/20/04 Northerly Who's 85yo. sarcastro is very desperate 3 stars
7/20/04 Roy Again 99% Will Smith, 1% Asimov. And it's Wild Wild West/MIB 2 Smith at that. 3 stars
7/20/04 April Gupton i'll pass on this one 3 stars
7/20/04 Laura Shangraw Not worth my time 2 stars
7/20/04 Rkm Lame, lacking in depth like all Smith's films 1 stars
7/20/04 Travis Shotwell obviously the story of TRON.will smith=FLYNN, sonny=TRON,big computer=MCP, ownerguy=SARK. 4 stars
7/19/04 Northerly Northerly 3 Sunline 0 Pinkline has no clue 3 stars
7/19/04 Maz Fun romp, nothing new, but deeper (if you look) than a regular summer movie 5 stars
7/19/04 N. Christopher Bell The only people who won't like this movie are going to be the Star Trek Faggots. 4 stars
7/19/04 herkos akhaion Can you spell Recycled? SOS! 3 stars
7/19/04 doug r If anybody remembers all the robot stories, this movie pretty much covers all the bases... 4 stars
7/18/04 Rocky Entertaining, cool themes 4 stars
7/18/04 Titus Not the best thing ever, but a good fun movie. Smith has grown up. 4 stars
7/18/04 peel umm...i liked it. and you guys cant review movies worth shit...or something 5 stars
7/18/04 Cassandra Farrar over the top 2 stars
7/17/04 JDC cliched even for an action pic 2 stars
7/17/04 ajay typical actiion flick... I can't wait to read the book which WILL be miles better. 3 stars
7/17/04 Exhosinmyhead Fun movie to watch. Dont get caught up in all the technicalities. Good. 4 stars
7/17/04 KingNeutron The people who wrote this movie should be shot. Stop insulting and twisting Asimov. 2 stars
7/17/04 The Talking Elbow "Grishnakh" ?? Are you from Shadowclan Orcs? Email me epochii@aol.com 3 stars
7/17/04 Grishnakh Will Smith + Sci-Fi = Garbage / MiB, ID4, SUCKED ! I, Robot is a complete insult to Asimov. 1 stars
7/17/04 Onyeabo Monago Didn't like the movie. Lots of cgi, cliche storyline. 1 stars
7/17/04 LGKIRK HARLAN MUST BE WOL-OLAN...THIS IS NOT THE SPEC.FICT. THAT WE, THE OLD FAN WANT TO SEE...DIG 2 stars
7/17/04 legend The movie is an insult to the book! It was bad. 2 stars
7/17/04 Rocky I enjoyed it, nice visuals, entertaining, kinda' hokey, .not GREATjust GOOD 3 stars
7/16/04 Alex ???? 2 stars
7/16/04 Amerigo Vespukey Could have been social commentary. Instead, crap. Boooooo. 2 stars
7/16/04 Richard A two hour shoe commercial - do you have your Concords now? 3 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  16-Jul-2004 (PG-13)
  DVD: 24-May-2005

UK
  N/A

Australia
  22-Jul-2004




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