Director: Chris Wedge
Starring (Featuring the voice talents of):
McGregor, Halle Berry, Mel Brooks, Greg Kinnear, Drew Carey,
Amanda Bynes, Robin Williams
RunTime: 1 hr 30 mins
Released By: 20th Century Fox
Released Date: 10 March 2005
The same team that brought you the hilarious Ice Age, now
takes you to a world populated solely by mechanical beings.
Our hero is a robot named Rodney, a teenager and aspiring
inventor. Rodney is voiced by Ewan McGregor. Rodney leaves
his home in Rivet Town, and makes for the big Robot City with
dreams of working alongside his hero, Big Weld. Big Weld is
a larger than life creative genius business tycoon, whose
motto, “see a need, fill a need” inspires Rodney.
Century Fox and Academy Award winning director Chris Wedge,
who last joined forces on the blockbuster animated hit ICE
AGE, now team to create another visually spectacular, three-dimensional
world, with an all-star, award-winning cast, in ROBOTS. Beyond
the scope, freshness and vibrancy of an incredible world populated
solely by mechanical beings, Wedge and his team are creating
memorable robots, each with “his” / “her”
own distinct personality. The result is a timeless tale that
pushes the boundaries of animation, while introducing characters
rich with whimsy, heart and soul. Based on author/animator
William Joyce’s “Roly, Poly Olie.”
The trailer itself didn't give much away or should I say it
wasn't able to leave any deep impression other than it's just
another animation movie.
Now after watching the finished product. The second animated
full length feature from Blue Sky Studio did in fact offered
an amazing array of endless thrills and surprises from start
to end. The movie opens where our young hero Rodney Copperbottom
(voiced by Ewan "Obi-Wan" McGregor in his adult
years) is "born". The process of how robots are
"born" is pretty interesting and well, innovative.
Since young, Rodney inspired to be an inventor. Encouraged
by his father, he is determined to do his father who is a
dishwasher bot proud. Thus begins his adventure in the larger
than life, Robot City where he gets to know a bunch of wacky
new friends, Fender (Robin Williams in his crazy, neurotic
best), Piper, Crank, Lug, Diesel and Aunt Fanny. Throw in
a corporate tyrant Ratchet (Greg Kinnear from “Stuck
On You”) who is ironically ruled by his authoritarian
mother (Jim Broadbent in a voice cross-over) himself. The
group is ready to save the Robots World from the ruthless
pair who are depriving the robots population from getting
spare parts. Either they get themselves upgraded or face the
ultimate destiny of being chopped!
The pair of screenwriters, Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel
(“Splash”, “A League of Their Own”)
has filled up “Robots” with enough charm and wits
to entertain both adults and kids. Spoofing anything from
“Star Wars” to Gene Kelly’s infamous Dancing
In the Rain to Britney Spears. There is plenty of laugh-out
moments splattered throughout. Most of them courtesy of Williams’
Fender, literally speaking a robot that can’t seem to
keep his hands and legs firmly rooted.
Of course when it comes to animation, the majority of the
credit has to go to the animators and backend crew for creating
a believable world of robots. Every screw, nuts, bolts and
metallic pieces are rendered ingeniously on the screen. In
fact the detailed, colourful CG characters, background will
instantaneously capture your attention once the Fox logo fade
out. The sequence of Rodney and Fender onboard the ride across
the city will have you tightly on the seat. It is not just
an ordinary vehicle they are boarding but a series of spins
and flings on the most peculiar metal parts you will ever
imagined. Compared to “Ice Age” where the colour
white forms the majority of the background, here we have layers
and tonnes of mechanical buildings and characters looming
onscreen. Lampposts that walk, pigeons that behaved like wind-up
toys and a talking fire hydrant.
There are plenty of "Stars" voices, Halle Berry
(in a rather wasted role) who played Rodney's love interest
Cappy, Jay Leno, James Earl Jones, Stanley Tucci, Drew Carey
and the American Idol Judges who played "Watches".
Perk up your ears to hear if you can spot them.
20th Century Fox and Blue Sky has a winner on their hands.
“Robots” is simply an entertaining tale of how
one can achieve their deepest dreams and desires. But it’s
Blue Sky’s remarkable animation skill that leaves you
rooted for their next animated outing. Look out Pixar, you
have met a worthy opponent and we are in for more treats!