Isaacs Asimovs classic, inventive sci-fi story gets a modern update in this film directed by Alex Proyas as anti-tech cop investigates a murder that might have been committed by a robot, leading to potentially drastic implications for humanity and its relationship with robots, the film stars Will Smith, Bridget Moynahan, Alan Tudyk.
I, Robot is a wonderfully intriguing premise for a Sci-fi story and the OG of the robot uprising/killer robot sub-genre in Sci-fi, in Asimovs world, robots, now servants to humans and prolific in society are governed by three laws. “A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm. A robot must obey orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.”.
And from there the films premise sort of takes root, set in 2035 as we follow Del Spooner (Will Smith) as he goes about his future cop business, investigating a potential crime committed by a robot which of course brings into question robots, their sentience and how dangerous they potentially could be. I, Robot is quite action packed though despite the themes and it’s very much a hollywood adaptation but that’s not entirely a bad thing, Will Smith is great in the leading role and brings his signature humour and mannerisms to the role, along with some good dramatic chops, acting alongside Bridget Moynahan as another main character Susan Calvin. On the whole the performances are fairly good in the film which is a bit odd to say as one of the important characters is the robot Sonny, voiced by the ever enthusiastic Alan Tudyk who does a great job. And as far as visuals go, the film did a good job and the AIs in the film have a quite a distinct and memorable design with a humanoid design that looks eerily unfinished.
One good thing about the film is the world building it does, quickly setting things up and showing you the future and the state of things, which do take an interesting turn as the story progresses, there are faults here though as typical action clichés rear their head and with some one dimensional characters and some cheesy acting. That being said, I, Robot isn’t a film I’d ever say was dull, with some frenetic future action and visually interesting looking action sequences between Del and the robots who are faster and stronger than any human. The film isn’t as impactful drama wise in its execution of the story as say Minority Report is, also being based on an iconic sci-fi story but it is an engaging and visually packed film with some interesting ideas, once again playing on humanities fears of being usurped and overthrown by its own creation.
. Plot is well worked, goes on interesting routes
. Has some good visuals, interesting robot design
. Will Smith is a great leading man