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Robot Stories (2003)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi | 20 January 2003 (USA)
Four tales: a robot baby as a pre-adoption test, a mother and her dying son's toy robot collection, a lonely robot office worker, and a sculptor contemplating robot-enabled immortality.

Director:

Greg Pak

Writer:

Greg Pak

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13 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tamlyn Tomita ... Marcia
James Saito ... Roy / Groper
Vin Knight ... Doug
Gina Quintos Gina Quintos ... Young Marcia
Karen Tsen Lee ... Mrs. Ito
Glenn Kubota ... Mr. Ito
Norma Fire Norma Fire ... Caseworker
T. Lynn Eanes T. Lynn Eanes ... Assistant (as Tanisha Eanes)
Joshua Spafford Joshua Spafford ... Technician
Catherine Carota Catherine Carota ... Nurse
Wai Ching Ho ... Bernice
Cindy Cheung ... Grace
Louis Ozawa Changchien ... Wilson
Angel Desai ... Amanda
Rea Tajiri Rea Tajiri ... Doctor
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Storyline

Winner of over 23 awards, "Robot Stories" is science fiction from the heart, four stories in which utterly human characters struggle to connect in a world of robot babies and android office workers. The stories include: "My Robot Baby," in which a couple must care for a robot baby before adopting a human child; "The Robot Fixer," in which a mother tries to connect with her dying son by completing his toy robot collection; "Machine Love," in which an office worker android learns that he, too, needs love; and "Clay," in which an old sculptor must choose between natural death and digital immortality. Written by Greg Pak

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Everything is changing... Except the human heart.

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Robot Stories Productions

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 January 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Istories me robot See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,806, 13 February 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$131,029, 20 June 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the "Machine Love" segment, behind the receptionist's desk is a logo that is Pak's actual logo. It consists of a stylized "P", an "A" and a "K" in a circle. See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Ito: [to young daughter] Want some advice, Marcia? Never fall in love. Never get married. Never have kids.
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User Reviews

 
flawed but interesting compilation film
14 February 2005 | by Buddy-51See all my reviews

In the four-part anthology film "Robot Stories," writer/director Greg Pak examines the role that technology plays in modern life, pondering the age old quandaries of what is real and what is synthetic and whether or not technology can truly enhance our lives. Knowing a good thing when he sees it, Pak has chosen to utilize many of the same cast members - largely Asian - for each of the unrelated episodes.

The first story, entitled "My Robot Baby," takes place in the not too distant future when couples who are looking to adopt a child are first sent home with a fully computerized and monitored, "simulated" baby that they have to take care of for a brief period of time (this is a more elaborate version of what many high school Health teachers do with their students to convince them of just how much work caring for a newborn can be). How the participants do on this "test" helps to determine their fitness as parents and their eligibility for getting a "real" child in the future. This segment is both creepy and witty in roughly equal measure. In the well acted and touching second episode, "The Robot Fixer," a young man lies brain dead in a hospital after he is run over by a car. His mother and sister, who have long been estranged from the man, spend their time reconstructing his collection of beloved toy robots as a way of coming to terms with who he really is. This is the only section that deals not with futuristic technology per se but with the part technology plays in our imaginations and fantasies. The third installment, "Machine Love," is probably the most conventional of the quartet, about how even two robots - in this case, two office "workers" - need a little love in a cold, uncaring world. It's a theme that has been explored in virtually every film involving robots since "Metropolis" in 1927. "Clay," the fourth and most thoughtful segment, takes us to a future world in which people, rather than dying, become somehow absorbed into a giant "system" that allows them to live on in holographic form. A dying sculptor is forced to choose between this kind of virtual "eternal life" devoid of tactile sensation, or taking his chances with a more natural albeit uncertain existence in the great beyond.

As with many anthology films, "Robot Stories" turns out to be better in parts than it is as a whole, with certain episodes inevitably proving to be more imaginative and more captivating than others. Moreover, the twenty-odd minute length allotted for each section doesn't allow for the kind of depth and resonance one finds in more fully developed feature length movies. Nevertheless, given the constraints of the format he has chosen, Pak has mounted an impressive little product, taking advantage of his miniscule budget to adopt a subtle, low-keyed approach to a subject that, given less limited resources, might otherwise have become top heavy with special effects. The acting - particularly on the part of the older actors in the cast - is outstanding. "Robot Stories" may not satisfy the demands of the average sci-fi aficionado, but those in search of something different may enjoy it.


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