Thursday, June 26, 2008

FILM: 10 NEW Robot Movies

With Wall-E and Meet Dave about to hit theaters, I started to wonder if this robot infatuation was going to disappear any time soon. While EW made a list of their favorite robotic friends, I made a list of the ones you might fall in love with in the future:

1. The Day the Earth Stood Still Remake (December 2008)

This is a short story that was turned into a movie in the '50s. It's about an alien and a robot that land on Earth with the mission of determining whether or not it is a peaceful planet. If it is, they'll leave, and if it isn't, they will destroy the planet in order to preserve peace in the galaxy. The coolest part of this story is that the indestructible robot is only one of many and it is he who is the master of the alien and not the other way around. The film stars Keanu Reeves, as the alien, Jennifer Connelly, Jaden Smith (Pursuit of Happyness), Jon Hamm ("Mad Men"), Kathy Bates, and John Cleese. Old Trailer.

2. How to Survive a Robot Uprising (TBA)

Daniel Wilson wrote this satirical novel as a faux-survival guide in the event of a robotic revolution. Because he's a Ph.D. candidate at the Robotics Institute of Carnegie Mellon University, the book is quite informative, listing historical knowledge as well as insight into present robot research, while giving tips on how to fend off attacks. For example, apparently running into a river will stop a robot from chasing you, because if it enters a body of water, it will sink. Clever! Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant (creators of "Reno 911!," and writers of The Pacifier and Night at the Museum) will be adapting the book. Mike Myers is set to star.

3. Robotech: Shadow Rising (2009)

Tobey Maguire is producing--and may be starring in--the live action incarnation of this animated 80s cartoon. It's about humans discovering Robotechnology in an alien starship that crashed, and using it to design giant robotic machines known as mecha--that can mutate just like Transformers--so they can fight off 3 extraterrestrial invasions.

4. Dominion (2009)

Ben Ripley (Species III) has been tapped to write the screenplay for this sci-fi film that seems like a spin-off of Terminator. It'll be about the advent of a new type of army, completely populated by robotic soldiers, and the man who will lead them.

5. Astro Boy (2009)

Timothy Harris (Space Jam and Kindergarten Cop) adapted this 60s Japanese manga comic about a robotic boy, who was built by a scientist who missed his recently deceased son. Living in the poor kid's shadow, Astro Boy sets out to find his own destiny. After encountering an underworld of robot gladiators, he returns home to save Metro City and reconcile with his creator. While David Bowers (Flushed Away) directs, these actors will voice the characters: Freddie Highmore, Nicholas Cage, Donald Sutherland ("Dirty Sexy Money"), Bill Nighy (Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End), Eugene Levy (American Pie), and Nathan Lane.

6. Voltron (2010)

Mark Gordon (10,000 B.C.) and producer/rapper Pharrell Williams plan on bringing this animated TV series to the big screen. The movie will follow five survivors of an alien attack who climb into lion-shaped robots in order to bind together and form the sword-wielding giant robot Voltron (sounds awfully similar to "The Power Rangers"). Together they will stop the alien invaders in post-apocalyptic New York.

7. Metal Men (2010)

Lauren Shuler Donner (X-Men: Last Stand) is producing this 60s comic that'll be adapted by Eric Champnella (Mr. 3000). The story follows 6 shape-shifting robots that were built by Dr. Will Magnus from gold, iron, lead, tin, mercury and platinum. Each has powers that are specific to their metal's characteristics. Gold, the leader, can stretch his body to great lengths. Iron is the strongest. Lead, the slow-witted and loyal one, can block radiation and morph into shields. Tin is the insecure one--probably because he only ever succeeds at morphing into containers, like cans. Mercury, the hot-tempered one, can melt and re-form himself through small spaces or over vast distances. And Platinum, the only female, can stretch and flatten herself into coils and strands. She also happens to be in love with her creator. It's still in very early stages so there's no word on who their enemy will be.

8. Short Circuit Remake (2010)

In 1986, a robot named Number 5 gets electrocuted, becoming the first robot with a personality. The original writers of the cute adventure comedy, Brent Maddock and S.S. Wilson (Tremors Saga and Wild Wild West), are remaking it for a more technologically advanced generation.

9. RoboCop Remake (2010)

A wounded cop gets a second chance at life as a cyborg. He becomes crime-ridden Detroit's resident hero--a one-man army. Back in the day, people used to argue who would win if Terminator and RoboCop faced off. Till this day, I stand by my decision. The Terminator comes from the future. Come on! No contest. So far, no one has been tapped to star or direct, but here's the teaser poster.

10. I, Robot 2 (2010)

At the end of the first film in 2004, the evil robots were turned back to normal and Sonny, the robot with a heart and a brain, went to join them at the storage facility they were sent to. It left viewers wondering if they would try to colonize elsewhere or maybe even attempt to integrate with the humans. Ron Moore ("Battlestar Galactica") is writing the sequel. He can go in many different directions with it, and I'm really interested in seeing what develops. While it's pretty certain that Will Smith will reprise his role, I seriously doubt that Shia Labeouf will return as his rambunctious sidekick.

And of course there's the upcoming Transformers and Iron Man sequels to look forward to.

Which film are you excited to see?
Are you already tired of all the robotic characters in theaters?

1 comment:

  1. I'm just tired of Will Smith. And I've almost had it with Jaden already

    Metal Men could/should be the best of this bunch. Awesome comic. A chance for new/unknown characters, instead of remakes and reremakes.