• : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/thebigcr/public_html/scifidorks/includes/file.inc on line 646.

His love is real, but he is not.


Haley Joel Osmond, Jude Law, Frances O'Connor, William Hurt

Sci-Fi, Drama

In the future, humans have developed artificially intelligent androids, Mechas, which exist in a second class civilization and provide various services to human beings. Henry Swinton is an employee at a company that hopes to market a new kind of Mecha. These new androids would exist as a surrogate child to those families who have already lost a child and, due to the population limit laws, are unable to have another.

Conveniently, the Swintons' son Martin is the victim of an incurable illness. With the advancement of cryogenic technology, they are able to keep him in an unconscious stasis, but it is unlikely he will ever awake. Henry seizes the opportunity to test the new Mecha prototype and convinces his wife Monica (Frances O'Connor) that it would be a good influence on their family. David (Haley Joel Osmond), the prototype, is brought home soon thereafter to become a part of their family. Initially Monica fears and dislikes him, but she soon accepts him as her child and even activates the part of David that will irreversibly love her.

All seems fine for awhile, but Martin eventually recovers from his illness and rejoins his place in the Swinton family. As a result, David's status as a non-human becomes painfully obvious and even dangerous. Monica is forced to abandon David as he embarks on a quest to find humanity and love.

Along the way he meets up with Gigolo Joe (Jude Law), a charismatic Mecha designed solely for pleasure. Joe teaches David the differences between humans and Mechas and the injustices that stem from this. Continually fleeing discovery and termination, David eventually finds his way to the end of the world where he meets his maker (William Hurt) and waits some more for answers to his existence.

This movie was directed by Steven Spielberg based on Stanley Kubrick's ideas. I have to admit, this little tidbit made me curious about the movie before I even knew what it was about. I suppose I was imagining a cute ET-like alien all of a sudden embarking on a variety of sexually deviant adventures all set to a Beethoven soundtrack. Not quite.

Contrary to a lot of reviews, this movie was actually very well done (except for one not-so-little problem discussed below). The scenery and characters were visually appealing, and the entire movie has a dark underbelly. AI is loosely based on the Pinnochio story, but it's a lot darker than the cartoon Disney version. The scene in the flesh market where Mechas are killed for amusement was especially gruesome. But there are subtler and more unsettling scenes throughout the movie; for example, David panics and almost drowns his brother in a chilling end to his family life.

The performances were wonderful. Frances O'Connor played a mother torn between conscience and heart with quiet anguish while Haley Joel Osmond played David with confusion and a perfect combination of robotic humanity. Apparently he didn't blink at any time in the movie. Maybe someday I'll watch it again to verify this- but with my short attention span, maybe not. My favorite character was Gigolo Joe, not just because he was the only light-hearted character in the entire movie, but because Jude Law played him as a fun-loving, pragmatic, but ultimately doomed big brother figure to David.

Anyway, now for the bad part of the movie, and it really is a BAD part. Similar to Mission to Mars, AI just didn't end where it should have. It kept going and going and going in possibly the longest 20 minutes I've had to endure. AI has the worst ending of any movie I have ever seen, and this completely spoils an otherwise great film. I could actually feel people sighing, whispering, and shifting in their seats when the horrible end sequence appeared on the screen. I was embarrassed for the creators and actors since I had actually enjoyed the movie up until that point. And I was especially embarrassed for Robin Williams who for some reason ended up narrating that final segment. Unfortunately, the last thing you remember about a movie is the ending...especially if it's as bad an ending as A.I.

Point Blank:
Go ahead and watch it. But turn it off when the ferris wheel falls near the end. Just trust me.