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In 2035, technophobic homicide detective Del Spooner of the Chicago PD heads the investigation of the apparent suicide of leading robotics scientist, Dr. Alfred Lanning. Unconvinced of the motive, Spooner's investigation into Lanning's death reveals a trail of secrets and agendas within the USR (United States Robotics) corporation and suspicions of murder. Little does he know that his investigation would lead to uncovering a larger threat to humanity.
According to the credits, the film was "Inspired by Isaac Asimov's Book"; however, there was never an Asimov "book" (i.e. novel) called 'I, Robot'. A short story called "I, Robot", about a robot called "Adam Link", was written by Earl and Otto Binder (aka "Eando" Binder) and published in the January 1939 issue of 'Amazing Stories', well before the unrelated and more well-known book 'I, Robot' (1950), a collection of short stories, by Asimov. Asimov admitted to being heavily influenced by the Binder short story. The title of Asimov's collection was changed to "I, Robot" by the publisher, against Asimov's wishes. See more »
At the end Spooner shoots the windows out and the glass shatters and completely falls out, completely unlike the previous demonstrations of the windows strength and structure. See more »
Like the Matrix and many other major movies, I, Robot has its foundations in philosophy, in its case the question of epistemology(The study of knowledge itself and computers being self-aware).
Will Smith is Spooner, a cop with an apparent attitude problem. Set in the future, I Robot sees Spooner embarking on a puzzling case of suicide where he believes it was actually murder. By a robot.
In this future society (With more than a homage to Blade Runner) robots are used as slaves of humans in all facets of life. They have 3 rules of conduct hard coded into them which essentially state they cannot harm humans. So the postulation by Spooner that a robot killed a man after a history where no robot had ever committed so much as a mugging presents a big problem to both his peers and his boss.
Suffice to say the story's plot thickens and a number of twists and turns emerge before the truth is revealed.
Will Smith is an absolute surprise here. Having previously been a light-hearted comedy actor he puts in a truly excellent and believable shift as a wise-cracking cop with a dark past.
However, the real star is the special effects and visual trickery. Impossible but ingenious camerawork and some jawdropping animation really make I, Robot feel truly alive and utterly believable, while never being dull for a second.
It arguably doesn't delve too deep into its philosophical undertones, but it doesn't really need to. It's a traditional Hollywood blockbuster action flick but it unquestionably has a brain and is a clear cut above the likes of Armageddon et al.
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