A perfect film to review to start a long list of what will hopefully be the first in a many number of upcoming reviews.
Although certainly not the most exciting film I've ever seen, I think it was a fun, entertaining big budget romp through Isaac Asimov's vision of the future. One term I like to use often to describe this type of film is a popcorn movie. If you don't enjoy the computer special effects, the cliche action sequences, or you can't suspend your disbelief when a police officer jumps from one 200 ft. high gantry to another while being surrounded by, and shooting at hundreds of attacking robots...just forget this one.
Will Smith plays downtrodden (yet amazing wardrobe and car) Detective Spooner, who has a conspiracy theory, that of course nobody, including his captain, believes. The theory that robots are planning to take over mankind. Sound familiar? Yes, the same storyline encompasses any number of other films; A.I., The Terminator series, 2001, The Matrix & Animatrix, Blade Runner, plus any number of about 1138 other movies. Taking place in the year 2035, the producers like to showcase lots of thought-provoking and interesting gadgets of the future, and highlight other ideas of what the future may have in store for us; i.e. inflation ($15.50 for a beer). If this is your thing, check it out...definitely.
With just average performances by Smith and the lady interest in the film, Bridget Moynahan (Coyote Ugly, The Recruit), the acting leaves something to be desired. Having said that, an average performance by Smith however, is higher on the bell curve than it would be for most action stars. He is witty, charming, intelligent, and strong. Basically the same person he is in 90% of his films. The small stand-out role I enjoyed most in i,ROBOT was by smaller time actor named Shia LaBeouf (The Battle of Shaker Heights, Holes). Appearing as the title character on the Disney channel's "Even-Stevens," he will be someone extraordinary to watch for in the coming years...mark my words.
The final action sequence in the film is hokey, and truly unbelievable, yet there are spurts of refreshingly hip directing styles by Alex Proyas (Dark City, The Crow). Fast paced, cliched, witty, visionary, and most of all fun; I would recommend this film to anyone who isn't interested in seeing an intelligently scripted film, but just wants to escape the daily news for 2 hours and watch very realistic looking robots be chased around by a cool cop with an edge, i,ROBOT is for you. I hate to assign stars or grades or ranks to a film, but if I had to I would give i,ROBOT a B- . I had fun in the theater, and I came out satisfied. It is everything a summer blockbuster should be.
Something to look for: In the scene where Spooner & Dr. Calvin first confront
Robertson (the "bad" guy), it appears that Bridget Moynahan has sleep lines on the right side of her face, then they disappear half-way through
the scene. Am I crazy? Watch for it.