3AW - Fairfax Radio Network

What we're talking about

Top 15 robots with feelings

Posted by: Jim Scembri | 20 November, 2012 - 3:13 PM
Wall-E

The affable android in Robot & Frank reminds us how the history of cinema is strewn with memorable robots; some behave like machines, some like humans, some like machine-like humans. Here's our pick of those who acted like people - for better and for worse. Enjoy.

WALL-E - Wall-E (2008) A small industrial workhorse designed to clean up the Earth, he ended up saving it. And he fell in love. 

JOHNNY 5 - Short Circuit (1986) This machine lost all his robotic credentials when he walked in on Ally Sheedy taking a bath and commented: "Nice software".  

BISHOP (Lance Henriksen) - Aliens (1986)
 He might have been an artificial person, but who didn't shed a tear when the Mother Alien tore him in two?  

C3PO (Anthony Daniels) - Star Wars (1977) Of all the futuristic visions George Lucas gave us with his game changer, nobody expected a robot version of a whinging Pom? He was also a dandy, which made him all the more lovable.

Image


ROBOCOP (Peter Weller) - Robocop (1987) 
Think Dirty Harry as a robot. Well, half a robot.

HUEY, DEWEY AND LOUIE - Silent Running (1972) After Bruce Dern's psychopathic interplanetary greenie murders his fellow spaceship colleagues to protect his space-borne forest, its the lowly work robots who remind him of his humanity. Or what's left of it. The film also contains another example where the death of a robot has real dramatic heft.

COLOSSUS - Colossus: The Forbin Project (1970) After taking over the world to save humanity from destroying itself, the super-computer casually announces that it expects people to love it. Heartless appliances don't do that. 

SONNY - I, Robot (2004) A robot on the run for murder. Not even an automaton wants to endure an interrogation by Will Smith - even if their acting is more convincing..

Image

DECKARD (Harrison Ford) - Blade Runner (1982) A robot who doesn't know he's a robot hunts down and kills other robots because they want to be more human. No other movie robot was more drenched in irony.

HAL - 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) Often misunderstood as a mass-murderer, HAL - the omnipresent, omnipotent ship-board computer - was only doing his job to protect the mission by removing threats. And if that meant decommissioning the crew, so be it. 

Image


MARVIN  - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1981 TV series; 2005 film) 
Also known as The Paranoid Android, Marv was a depressed, cynical robot who found pleasure in nothing. Very easy to love - and push around. Can't get more human than that.

ANDREW (Robin Williams) - Bicentennial Man (1999) 
A house robot as wise-cracking buffoon. The role Robin Williams was born to play.

DARYL (Barrett Oliver) - D.A.R.Y.L.(1985) He might have been a Data Analysing Robot Youth Lifeform - but he was still a kid.

Image


DAVID (Haley Joel Osment) - A.I. (2001) 
A child robot is programmed to have real feelings, then is abandoned to fend for himself in a cold-hearted future where junked bots are destroyed for sport. An under-appreciated Steven Spielberg film - and more moving than ET (1982). 

Image


DOT MATRIX - Spaceballs (1987)
 Voiced by the wise-cracking Joan Rivers, this fembot's job was to protect her Princess Vespa (Daphne Zuniga) from losing her virginity in the Wild West of outer space, as imagined by Mel Brooks.

Share

Blog comments Your Say

Post a comment * Mandatory fields