I, Robot

  • Review Date: November 19, 2009
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 2004
  • Running Time: 90 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Will Smith almost redeems generic man vs. machine actioner.
  • Review Date: November 19, 2009
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 2004
  • Running Time: 90 minutes

Age(i)

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Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Human beings have to be watchful as they develop newer and more complex technology; There is a danger inherent in letting automation take over so many aspects of our lives. The hero faces ridicule and punishment for following through on his beliefs; sometimes doing what you think is right has consequences.

Positive role models

Heroes come in all sizes, shapes, colors, and genders: African-American police officers and supervisors, female scientific expert, etc. Leading character begins as "robo-phobic," but learns to accept, even respect, the robotic beings. 

Violence

Heavy on violent Robot versus Human action. Numerous scenes in which robots are shot and "terminated." Robots chase and attack humans in several sequences. A particularly intense car accident results in major destruction of the robots. A little girl is shown trapped underwater in repeated visuals. A dead human body is seen on the floor with blood around the mouth. Character jumps out of window.

Sex

Brief shot of naked backside.

Language

Frequent cursing: "ass" in various forms, along with "s--t," "goddamn," "hell," "damn," "sonofabitch," "kiss my ass," "pissed off."

Consumerism

Obvious and frequent product placement including JVC, Converse, Fed Ex, and Audi.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some alcohol consumption: drinking from a bottle, social drinking, one high ball.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that though most of the violent attacks are directed at robots, the creatures (some with distinct personalities and human voices) are crushed, dismembered, exploded, shot at, and destroyed. The results of one car crash are particularly intense. Humans are also in danger: a scientist is dead and bloody on the ground having fallen from a great height; repeated flashbacks show a young girl trapped and drowning in a car; a great, military-like force of robots chase and try to kill humans. Swearing is relatively mild, but there are many instances of  "ass," "s--t," "goddamn," "hell," "piss," etc. In one early scene, Will Smith is seen in the shower, naked from the back, perhaps to compare the human physical ideal with the robotic form, otherwise it seems gratuitous. Product placement is obvious and frequent.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Chicago, 2035. Robots are an integral part of society's daily life. On the eve of the launch of a new, advanced order of robot technology, the scientist responsible for its development (James Cromwell) is found dead, presumably a suicide. Police Detective Del Spooner (Will Smith) is called in to investigate. Spooner, who admits to an ongoing prejudice against robots, believes the scientist was murdered. His suspicions are bolstered when he confronts a renegade robot, "Sunny," who appears to have broken the accepted robot code. Spooner becomes a target himself as he pursues his theory against the wishes of the police establishment and in defiance of U.S. Robotics, a corporate giant. As Spooner gets closer to the truth, war between Man and The Machine becomes inevitable.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

I, ROBOT is inspired by a collection of Isaac Asimov stories. In those stories, basic laws for robot behavior are set down: 1) a robot cannot harm a human or allow one to be harmed; 2) a robot must obey human instructions less those instructions conflict with Law #1; and 3) a robot must protect himself unless doing so conflicts with Laws #1 and #2. Using those basic rules, director Alex Proyas and his team have set out to make an entertaining "good versus evil" action movie with hero Will Smith reliable in his likable "everyman" role. On some levels it works: lots of good special effects, imaginative settings, the requisite mayhem, destruction, and suspense. However, very little attention has been paid to wit or originality. Even less attention has been paid to the quality of some key performances: a few characters are one-note wonders and others seem even more robotic than the automated fellows with whom they interact. Entertaining, yes; memorable, no.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about technology. What do you think the filmmakers are trying to say about the fast pace of developing technology? What are the positive effects of the changes? What are the dangers?

  • Do you think that movie violence is easier to watch when the object of destruction is not human? How does that compare to "cartoon" violence?

  • Was the movie successful at creating the year 2035? How did the sets, visual effects, music, and costumes contribute to your experience?

  • Del Spooner seems to be the only person suspicious of the robot culture. What kinds of pressure does he have to face because of his beliefs? How does he change over the course of the story? How does he change others?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:July 16, 2004
DVD release date:December 14, 2004
Cast:Bridget Moynahan, James Cromwell, Will Smith
Director:Alex Proyas
Studio:Twentieth Century Fox
Genre:Science Fiction
Run time:90 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:intense stylized action and some brief partial nudity

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
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  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Written byAnonymous October 9, 2014
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

I, Robot review

========================================================= Sex/Nudity: We see Del in his tight briefs when he awakens. Moments later, we see a full body side shot of him standing nude in the shower (from a distance and mostly in silhouette) that shows his bare butt (his leg position blocks a view of his crotch). After Susan says that Lawrence told her to accommodate Del in any way possible, Del suggestively (but playfully) responds, "Really?" We see Del in his boxers again when he awakens. We see the full body shape of Susan in the shower, but due to the nature of the shower door and water/steam on it, we only see her non-explicit silhouette. 5/10. ========================================================= Violence: Seeing a robot running down the street carrying a woman's purse, Del pursues it through the street, eventually tackling and aiming his gun at it (but it turns out to have been rushing an asthma inhaler to its owner). We see that a person either has committed suicide or been thrown through an office window to his death hundreds of feet below. Del takes a chair and smashes it against a large pane of glass to prove that it's safety glass. Sonny and Del aim their guns at each other, with the robot then suddenly taking flight and Del shooting at it as it leaps from a window and falls many stories to the atrium below where it smashes the surface below it upon impact (and then runs off). Del aims his gun at various identical robots (that are somewhat human in shape and have faces, but aren't realistic looking androids), hoping to flush out Sonny. He then shoots one in the head and it drops to the floor. Sonny grabs Del and throws him across a large room. The robot then escapes, but various cops shoot at it outside the building, eventually catching it in a net. Sonny slams his hands down so hard on a metal table that he leaves imprints of his robotic hands in it. Del slowly makes his way through Lanning's large but deserted house at night. We then see that the programming instructions for some huge, demolition robotic machinery have been changed from the following morning to that night, meaning it's going to start with Del inside the house. It does and he then tries to flee from the massive destruction of the home that occurs all around him. After several close calls with the machinery and/or falling debris (while carrying a house cat) and shooting at a door while running toward it (to open it), Del makes it outside. As Del drives through a large tunnel, several large U.S. Robotics transport vehicles pull up in front of and behind him. They then open up and various robots leap out and jump on Del's vehicle, with one smashing its fist through the windshield, grabbing the "steering wheel" and purposefully trying to crash the vehicle. He shoots and runs over many of the robots, but they just keep coming. He then spins his vehicle, sending the robots on it flying off and into the transport vehicles or under his tires. One of the large transport vehicles then crashes and explodes (only robots are on board). Del's vehicle then ends up sliding down the tunnel on its roof and eventually crashes into a support pillar. He's wounded and bleeding, but otherwise okay. A robot, however, slides his smashed vehicle toward him (nearly hitting him), and then grabs and throws Del across the way. Del tries to escape by climbing away, but the robot grabs and spins him around a horizontal pole until he crashes to the floor. Del tries to hit the robot with a large pipe, but it blocks the shots. It then repeatedly hits him on the arm with it. A guard grabs Del by the wrist, but Del then twists that guard's forearm, causing him pain. We see lots of newer robots attacking older ones, and some of those new ones try to get Del who barely manages to escape. A robot knocks a young man backwards. Robots attack a bunch of cops who shoot back at them and we then see a wide-scale scene of bedlam and hitting, etc. Bergin shoots several with his shotgun, but another one grabs and throws him to the floor (we don't see the impact of that). Susan's robot suddenly won't let her out of the house and pushes her back into her chair. Del then shoots that robot "dead." Angry mobs of humans carrying handguns, machine guns and chains clash with a large robotic army with robots being shot and humans being hit and tossed around. As Robots attack one guy, Del ends up briefly flying through the air and shoots some of those robots. He and one robot grab each other by the neck, but Susan blasts the robot. We see a dead man on the floor who has either burn or finger impression marks on his neck (meaning that's how he was killed). Sonny holds a gun on Susan's head, but does so as a decoy as Del then goes from aiming at Sonny to shooting various other robots. Part of Sonny's robotic arm is damaged as he reaches through a protective field to obtain a vial. Various robots attack Sonny but he beats them off him. Robots smash some atrium glass and crash down onto a suspended surface where they try to attack Del and Susan. Both shoot many robots, but a few get to Susan and start to break off the catwalk she's standing on, eventually causing it to dangle from the structure and her to dangle from it. She eventually falls (from a great height), but a robot dives after and saves her in midair, all while Del battles more robots. More robots attack Sonny, with him breaking one's neck and beating off the others. Del dives to grab a valuable vial that's been tossed his way, but that mean's he's now falling a great distance. He then slams his arm and hand into some sort of energy field/structure that damages his arm. A huge explosion destroys a "mainframe" type computer as well as various individual robots. 7/10. ========================================================= Blood/Gore: We see a body lying in the atrium of a building with dried blood from the mouth and a pool of blood behind the head (resulting from a long fall to that surface). We see some photos of Lanning's body with blood on his face. Del has some blood down the side of his head. Del has blood on his head and then some running from his mouth following a traffic accident. More comes from his mouth and he then spits out more (in a spray). We also see that his tennis shoe appears to be soaked in blood. We see that a human has a robotic arm (we see the "flesh" partially torn away to reveal the mechanical parts beneath it). We then see the person spray something on the "wounds" that instantly heal them back to normal. We see a dead man on the floor who has either burn or finger impression marks on his neck (meaning that's how he was killed). We see several more views of additional flesh wounds/tears in a person's robotic arm. Del has some slightly bloody scrapes on his face. 6.5/10. ========================================================= Profanity: At least 14 "s" words, 1 slang term for male genitals ("d*ck"), 16 hells, 8 asses (2 used with "hole"), 3 damns, 1 S.O.B., and 2 uses each of "G-damn" and "Oh my God" and 1 use each of "For Christ's sakes," "For God's sakes" and "God" as exclamations. 5.5/10. ========================================================= Alcohol/Drugs: Del has a beer and the bartender brings him two more, one of which he shares with his boss. Others also drink in this bar. Del pours himself a drink in Susan's place. 2.5/10. ========================================================= Smoking: None. ========================================================= I, Robot is an amazing science fiction film and is definitely worth watching. I give it a 7.5/10. =========================================================
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 12 years old December 23, 2010
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

good for tweens and up.

LOVED this movie! lots of action. and the semi creepiness of this movie was cool. my only concern was the small amount of language in this movie, but other than that it was AWESOME!
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Kid, 12 years old December 31, 2009
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

Amazing Action Pic but has Swearing Throughout.

This movie with will smith is a winner! This movie has great special effects, acting and amazing storytelling. The worst issue is swearing but I Tell you, Will Smith swears GOOD! The violence is very stylized and has a lot of kicking, punching and fighting. There are some gun fights but there is no blood. probably the most bloody seene is when they show the creator of the robots dead in the middle of a building ( an apperant sucide). This movie I would say for eleven year olds and older, no less. Great FILM!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Teen, 13 years old Written bykellipetrelli November 11, 2010
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

Good for tweens

I liked how the characters bonded and worked together and how the movie played out. It is an interesting concept, seeing that is slowly turning into this. Robots are replacing most simple machines and this may just be what the world comes to. Ralistic Idea if you really think about it.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Great messages
Great role models

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