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I love a good animated film and now my daughter is getting older I can introduce her into my collection of all things animated. One of the films she watched recently was Robots.
Rodney Copperbottom hasn't has the greatest start in life, his dishwasher dad and stay at home mum couldn't give him the best like the other kids, as he aged he got given hand me down spare parts instead of new ones, at one point he even gets given pink parts from his cousin! Rodney and his father would always sit and watch Bigweld on the television, he is a huge inventor and owner of Bigweld Industries, he was inspired to become an inventory himself.
Rodney invents Wonderbot, a cute little flying robot meant to help his father wash dishes at work. His father encourages him to follow his dream and tells him to travel to Robot City to show Bigweld his invention. Robot City is totally different to what he is used to and ends up travelling across the city in a ball type thing. He meets Fender, a robot who is just trying to do all he can to get by, like taking photos and trying to get money for them. Rodney attempts to get into Bigweld industries but finds out that it has been taken over by Ratchet, Ratchet is trying to stop older robots from getting new parts and only sells new models, old robots are destined for the 'chop shop' where they get melted down and made into new parts. Rodney doesn't like this idea and tries all he can to put things right again.
The film isn't one of the greatest animation films I've seen, sure it's watchable and I like to watch it but it isn't one I feel particularly strong about. The storyline is ok, it's not the greatest story for an animation and feel it could be improved to make the film a more lovable one. That being said, the animation is absolutely fantastic, I particularly like the part where Rodney is travelling across the city on the ball, the attention to detail in the background is fabulous. The characters themselves are well detailed and each one has its own human references, Fender for example, has a long nose and Rodney has a small square-ish face. I don't feel like anything has been left out in regards to animation.
The voice cast is great, it has the likes of Ewan McGregor, Mel Brooks and Robin Williams. The voices are well acted and fit in perfectly with the film. I particularly like Robin Williams as Fender, Fender is a brilliant character and Robin Williams fits in with the comedy factor that Fender brings to the film.
Robots is a film I will watch again, even though it isn't one of my favourites as it just doesn't have much depth to it but it is still alright for an animation. The cast and animations alike are both absolutely fantastic and I feel if there was a bit of a better story then this film would have been excellent. My three and a half year old gets a little bored when she watches it so we don't watch it often.
A must see film, Robots is very funny, has a great storyline with meaning, and one not to mention stars the voice of my favourite actors - Robin Williams!
I personally have owned this dvd since it came out in 2005 and when I'm looking through all of my films for something to watch, as soon as I see Robots I wouldn't even think twice and just stick it on.
The film guarantees vibrant colour, quality picture and crisp sound. The characters are lovable and they all have different personalities. It's not overloaded with too much music throughout the film but the music that is in the film really brings out the fun in the scenes it's featured.
It's great for all the family, for anyone, any age and any gender, and I can imagine will be loved for years and years to come.
You can buy this dvd as cheap as chips now which is always an added bonus :)
WHAT IT'S ABOUT
Rodney Copperbottom is a young inventor robot who is off to the big city to find and work for Bigweld, the president of a corporation that makes spare parts for robots. However, Rodney discovers that the conniving Ratchet has taken over and wants to introduce upgrades into the market and scrap the spare parts, and any robot that can't afford to buy the upgrades would get melted down and turned into something else! Rodney meets up with a group of other rusty robots and plan to find Bigweld and bring him back to stop Ratchet's dastardly plans.
CHARACTERS & CAST LIST
Rodney Copperbottom - Ewan McGregor
A young blue robot and aspiring inventor.
Cappy - Halle Berry
Rodney's love interest.
Fender - Robin Williams
An old red robot that's always falling apart.
Piper Pinwheeler - Amanda Bynes
Fender's younger sister.
Bigweld - Mel Brooks
Phineas T. Ratchet - Greg Kinnear
Crank Casey - Drew Carey
Aunt Fanny - Jennifer Coolidge
Lug - Harland Williams
Madame Gasket - Jim Broadbent
Lydia Copperbottom - Dianne Wiest
Herb Copperbottom - Stanley Tucci
Loretta Geargrinder - Natasha Lyonne
Fender's love interest.
Tim - Paul Giamatti
Mr. Gunk - Dan Hedaya
Animated short film featuring Aunt Fan
Ice Age 2 Scrat teaser
Behind the scenes look at Ice Age 2
The making of Robots
12 minutes of additional/deleted scenes
Animation bloopers and audio out-takes of voice over talent
2 interactive set top games
Director audio commentary
Robots music video
Running Time: 91 minutes
Released on DVD and VHS on September 27th 2005 - Robots is also the last 20th Century Fox animated film to ever receive a VHS release.
Rating: Universal Suitable for All
FILM ONLY REVIEW
Rodney Copperbottom is a robot who has grown up dreaming of becoming an inventor, he spends his time inventing new things and wants to meet his idol, Bigweld. When he becomes a teenager he decides the time has come for him to leave home and head to the big city where Bigweld has a company and never closes the door on new inventors.
Rodney makes his way to the big city but it is not an easy ride and along the way he meets Cappy, a run down robot who is always thinking of scams and making money. They strike up a friendship but soon leaves each other and head off for their own things. Rodney arrives at Bigwelds factory only to find the doors are shut and things are changing. Can Rodney meet his idol and become the famous inventor he has always dreamed of?
I must confess that both me and hubby have a strong liking for children's films as they make a refreshing change and are always so easy to watch, this one was no exception. The story for this film was great and I loved how they used robots instead of humans as it gave a new spin on things and more could be done with the characters. The way the story was put across made it very easy to follow especially for younger viewers.
The animation was excellent throughout the film. The robots all looked good and all very different. They were all of different sizes and shapes and for me this was a good thing as it portrayed the fact that all colours and shapes could live together in peace and not be picked on for being different. They were all very well detailed, right down to the facial features and the way they walked and talked and for me it was the detail which really bought them to life. The scenery and sets which were created were all very good and nice and bright so easy to look at and help keep the attention of children. I found the way t
E city was show to be very good and very similar to out human cities. There were a few things which were different and one of the things included the transport they had. I just loved the ride Rodney had when he arrived in the city and thought a lot of work had gone into the making of these scenes. The details were all very good and for me at times I did actually forget that I was watching an animated film.
The characters were all very good, the lead one of Rodney was great and easy to get to know and understand, we got a brief look at his childhood and what he was like growing up and I think this did help us to get to better understanding of him. He appearance was good and he did look friendly. The vocals he had were given by Ewan McGregor and I think he managed to really bring emotion and expression to the animated character by the way he spoke and the elaborations he gave to the way he said and phrased things. Another good character was Bigweld, he looked funny and was a big characters, he was voiced by Mel Brooks and he managed to put a lot of humour into the film with the fun and loud voice he gave to him. Other vocals came from actors, Helle Berry, Jim Broadbent, Drew Carey, Paul Giamatti and Greg Kinnear.
As with most films there are some baddies in this one, they are not scary though, the appearance of them is nothing which may scare young children but I would advise that towards the end of the film there are a few scenes which show mild peril so you may want to distract them slightly on these parts. There really is nothing for children over the age of 5 to worry about in this film and I think they will thoroughly enjoy it and find it quite funny. There is quite a lot of humour in the film and it is not all solely for the children, there were a few small gags which both me and hubby thought were great so I think they have gone for both the young and adult market with this side of the film. There are one or two characters which do make the film very fun to watch and for me it was mainly Cappy who gave us the laughs.
The music in the film was great and suited it very well. It was mainly light and easy to listen to and I do think it helped with the telling of the story and the emotions and slightly drama of what was happening.
I am only reviewing the film so there are no bonus features to speak about. The running time of the film is 91 minutes and I found that the story moved at a good pace from start to finish so it should manage to keep the attention of young viewers, the rate is a U and I do fully agree with this. The film can be bought on DVD for less than £5 now and I do think this is great value for money.
I have no problems in giving this film the full 5 stars. It was enjoyable and entertaining to watch and it is one the whole family can sit down and share together.
When "Robots" was released in 2005 I headed off to see it in the cinema. I have to admit in the sea of animated films offered by the likes of Pixar and Dreamworks in the last five years I had practically forgotten seeing the film when I met my husband and he happened to have the dvd in his collection. In the time we've been together I've watched the film at least 3 times and it never fails to raise at least a little giggle.
This Twentieth Century Fox animated film was directed by Chris Wedge and Carlos Saldanha who have been involved in the fabulous Ice Age films. As suggested by the title, it is set in a world where everyone is a Robot, as are their pets. Rodney Copperbottom is the beloved only child of hardworking parents who are forced to provide him with a serious of hand-me-down-parts, including some teenage parts from his very popular female cousin. Rodney learns his work ethic from his parents as well as his ability to dream. Rodney is also inspired by Bigweld, an inventor from the big city who features on a television show.
The film really gets going when Rodney heads to the big city, inventions in hand, to find Bigweld. Rodney quickly realises that all is not well at Bigweld Industries. He meets an eclectic bunch of robots who show him how to survive metropolitan life. Rodney's skills are soon necessary as the evil robot, Ratchet, who is now running Bigweld threatens the survival of his new friends and potentially that of his aging parents.
SO SHOULD I SEE IT?
"Robots" is a great little film. I cannot honestly rate it as highly as some of my animated favourites such as Shrek, Ice Age, Kung Fu Panda or really any of the Pixars. However, if you have seen those and are looking for a bit of fun, this is it. Robin Williams steals the show as Fender, the street smart robot who takes Rodney under his wing. Ewan McGregor lends his voice to Rodney and a host of big names from both sides of the pond take on smaller roles. It's quite fun to watch the film and then afterwards see how many you were able to guess correctly.
The animation is fun and consistent in this film. There are some great sequences such as Rodney's first trip on the city's transportation system or when Rodney and Fender find themselves in the scrap yard. The juxtaposition of the old, nuts and bolts robots with the shiny futuristic robots keeps your interest. It also goes to show that you can't judge a robot by its upgrades as the line between goodie and baddie cannot be drawn based on the appearance of a robot.
The humour in the film is fairly traditional Robin Williams though with some moments of Mel Brooks (yes, that's one of the voices to look for). It is family friendly, but with the odd reference thrown in to delight adults. At times it does find its way into "fart" humour at one point which doesn't appeal to me but never fails to amuse my husband (men!). It fails to captivate adults in the way that Shrek managed, but does try. There is also some great music in the film with a fabulous final number.
If you're looking for a new addition to your animated library do give this a look, but only if you've already seen some of the great offerings from the last couple of years.
I have been desperate to get my youngest turned on to anything other than shrek as I was really growing to resent the big green fella. We have tried hundreds of DVDs that we thought he would like and although he has enjoyed them all, he has always ended up back with Shrek until we discovered Robots. Now, we have a whole new problem
Directors: Chris Wedge and Carlos Saldanha
Genre: animated family comedy
Release Date: March 2005
Actors: Ewan McGregor, Robin Williams, Greg Kinnear, Jim Broadbent, Mel Brookes, Halle Berry, Drew Carrey, Jennifer Coolidge, Diane Weist and the list goes on .
***Whats it about***
Rodney Copperbottom is a would-be inventor living the quiet life with his dishwasher dad and housewife mum but he dreams of making them proud by following in the footsteps of his hero, Bigweld in Robot City.
His ailing father, disheartened with his own job encouraged Rodney to follow his dreams and gives him the nudge he needs to take the first step to meeting Bigweld, and so Rodney sets off with one of his inventions to show him.
However, what Rodney finds in Robot City is not what he had expected. In Bigwelds place is Ratchet who, directed by his horrible mother, is interested in money not inventions and banishes all old robots to the scrap heap by only producing new parts and not repairing old spares.
Will Rodney and his friends put a stop to evil Ratchets plan? With Robot City be saved? And just what happened to Bigweld anyway and will Rodney convince him to develop his invention through the Bigweld Corporation? You will just have to watch the film to see like the rest of us!
***Who are Chris Wedge and Carlos Saldanha ***
Chris Wedge is an actor, director, producer and writer with much of his later career revolving around animation. Not only has he directed and produced other animated features like Ice Age and Ice Age Two, he has also lent his voice to Scrat, one of the films most loved characters and the star of a follow up shorts, Gone Nutty and No time for Nuts.
Carlos Saldanha, in a similar career has credits as director, producer and actor as well as having spent time working in visual effects for which he worked on Brad Pitt blockbuster, Fight Club.
Interestingly, it seems Chris and Carlos have formed a strong working relationship. Robots is not their first venture together. Carlos actually directed Ice Age and Ice Age Two with Chris as well as the two Scrat shorts. Perhaps this is just the beginning of a new Hollywood pairing.
***How was the script***
The script for Robots was fantastic, but with the same powerhouse behind this as there was for Ice Age and Ice Age Two, it is hardly surprising.
Animated films face stiff competition these days and it can often feel that so much focus is put on the film being funny, that the actual story gets forgotten about. The humour can often feel forced and out of context and the film loses all substance.
Robots doesnt do that. The story is the magic in the film. It certainly is funny with some fantastic slapstick humour (Fender doing Britney Spears will bring tears to your eyes it is so funny!) but there is so much more involved in this production. There is obviously a genuine affection for the characters, which involves the audience more. There is an on-going adventure that provides the excitement and energy expected and the script combines the humour we expect and demand with tenderness, fire and guts. It is very much a story of determination and faith and friendship and as a viewer, I was desperate to see Rodney and his freaky friends succeed.
***How was the acting/voice overs***
Perhaps the line-up is why the writers and directors didnt feel the need to overdue the written humour. With big comedy hitters like Jennifer Coolidge, Mel Brookes and Robin Williams there isnt too much need for them to worry. The three comedians could make a nuclear bomb funny if pushed and as all three are free-flowers who are most experienced with improvisation, it must have been the easiest thing for Saldanha and Wedge to just let them do what they do best Coolidge as the big bummed Aunt Fanny, Brookes in a smaller capacity as Bigweld and Williams as the comedic genius of Fender, Rodneys new friend and constant companion. It is fair to say, that no matter how strong a script this film had, without Williams in particular, this film would not have been the success it was.
Ewan McGregor as Rodney was suitable enough, although I find his performance to be bit like kissing a dead fish. He is out of his depth with such attention-grabbing stars and he kind of gets forgotten about in parts. Halle Berry as Cappy, Rodneys love interest is similar. Her character is essential to the plot but her overall contribution is relatively limited apart from a few of the action scenes towards the end.
Greg Kinnear who plays the evil, but under the thumb mamas boy does a good job in the role of Ratchet but his mother played by Jim Broadbent is far superior. She is a bossy, cranky despicable old woman and I imagine a great part to play!
The cast worked well and on screen appeared to be a good ensemble group (although I suspect the never even met. Their relationships made the film fun and added a personal touch you wouldnt accept from a film about nuts, bolts and mechanical failings.
***How was the cinematography***
This was a magical film to watch. The detail was extraordinary. Robot City reminded me of the most intricate Pinball Game. You almost want to keep pausing it scene by scene so you can absorb everything that is going on.
The climax scene is fabulous and highlights the fact that the film is as much about good choreography as it is about a good story and good characters. Much of the film is like watching an extended dance sequence with bold colours blended in seamlessly with the darker, muted colours. It being a technology-based film, it is hardly surprising that the animation takes on a slightly edgier feel with more definite, almost architectural futuristic designs throughout.
Considering the main characters were mechanical objects it was amazing how the animation made them come alive and even allow the viewer to warm to them. Each of the mains had features which were surprisingly human, like Aunt Fannys huge bum! These small details turn a hollow, metal creature instantly into a squishy, squeezable bundle of human softness.
*Rodneys first introduction to Fender and his first trip on the cross town express
*Fenders Impromptu Britney Spears performance classic!
*The Bigweld/Rodney domino scene
* The fantastic conclusion scene for the pure genius of the massive production
***What did we think of it***
The entire family loved this! It is films like these that remind you what uncomplicated, human comedy is about. If you want to explore the healing powers of laughter then this is a film for you. There arent any fancy catches like are often seen in animation, but that is because it doesnt need it. This film stands on its own, is what it is and deserves all our respect for it.
**Fender tries to sell Rodney a map of the stars with aptly names stars, Axle Rose, Britney Gears and MC Hammer
* Robin Williams performed the scene with Fender and Rodney attempting to get past Tim eight times in eight different accents
*In the opening scene as Rodney walks in Rivet Town, one of the vendors sells ice cream called "Auntie Freeze" - a chemical used in radiators in vehicles in countries, which experience low temperature or snowy weather
My little boy has been going on about the film 'Robots' for ages, so when I found it on sale for £7.99 I bought it for him.
It is rated a PG and runs for 86 minutes
Herb Copperbottom and his wife live in Rivet Town. They have a son named Rodney. Rodney's dad works as a dishwasher in a big fancy restaurant.
Rodney sees himself as an aspiring inventor. His favourite programme on television shows Bigweld (who is Rodney's hero) and his company, Bigweld Industries, in Robot City. Bigweld says that his industry is always open to new inventors. Rodney would love to meet him, but thinks this is just a dream.
Once Rodney leaves school he finds a job in the kitchens where his dad works. He creates an invention called 'Wonderbot', designed to speed up all the dishwashing his dad has to do. All goes well until the owner, My Gunk walks in and makes Wonderbot nervous ..with disastrous results.
Rodney has had enough and buys a one way ticket to Robot City, to find a job to help his dad pay back Mr Gunk for the damage done to his restaurant, and to achieve his dream of meeting Bigweld.
Upon arrival in Robot City he asks many people for directions to Bigweld Industries, including a robot obsessed with taking his picture and a break dancing robot.
He eventually manages to find out where it is and the journey from the train station to Bigweld Industries is in short brilliant and very imaginative.
Trying to get into Bigweld Industries proves difficult as Bigweld is no longer in charge, so new inventors are no longer allowed in.
Rachet, who has taken over from Bigweld plans on stopping making spare parts for robots and make them buy upgrades instead, to make the company more money - but could he have another, more sinister motive
Needless to say, Rodney manages to find a way in - albeit for a very short period of time.
The robot who was taking pictures at the train station we find out is called Fender, and him and Rodney become friends, along with the rusties (Fenders family and friends). Rodney stays with them and learns that since Rachet has been in charge at Bigweld, the rusties have had to stay out of sight of 'sweepers', otherwise they will catch them and take them to the 'chopping shop'(scrap metal factory).
When Rachet stops making the spare parts, the robots go to Rodney for him to fix them. When Rachet finds out he knows he must put a stop to it.
Rodney goes on a quest to find Bigweld, to put him back in charge so that Bigweld Industries will make spare parts again, but along the way Fender gets caught by Sweepers and is taken to the chopping shop.
Will Rodney be able to rescue Fender ?????????????
Will he be able to find Bigweld ???????????????????
Will he be able to put a stop to Rachet ?????????????
You'll have to watch it to find out!!
Halle Berry, Ewan McGregor, Mel Brooks and Robin Williams are amongst some of the celebrities who did the voice over's for the film.
Some of the funniest parts of this film that stuck in my mind are when Herb and his wife decide they want to make a baby - literally. They make the baby and find they have one piece left to fit - now did they want a boy or a girl!!
Also as Rodney grows up he has to have hand me down spare parts, so at the age of twelve he has hand me downs from his cousin Vanessa - a hot pink top!!
There are also quite a few special features included on this DVD.
Commentary - Technical commentary
Aunt Fan's tour of Booty - A short computer animated tour of Robot City's train station.
Voices of Robots - Interviews with the stars behind the voices.
Music Video - What it says. My little boy enjoyed this part - he was on the floor dancing along with it!
Discontinued parts - The deleted scenes.
Meet the Bots - This section was pretty good. You could select one of the robots and you would be given some information about them. You could then go to the design gallery which shows drawings and pictures of the robot you chose and a 3D turnaround of the robot.
The robot arcade - This has two sections - robot dance in which a robot appears on screen and you can select a dance routine from the list for it to do, such as Robo-tut, Oil spill and Robo twist to name a few. The other part was Fenders photo shoot which was a memory game. You had to look at a picture for five seconds and then answer questions about it.
Ice Age 2 Teaser - Trailer for the film.
Ice Age 2 Sneak Peak - A behind the scenes look.
I found this to be a really good film. It had lots of laughs and plenty of action going on to keep you and the children entertained. The animation is very good and it is obvious that a lot of thought and imagination went into making it. My little boy didn't move from the settee whilst it was on and he even enjoyed some of the special features. I would recommend this to anyone.
The delightful designs of William Joyce (writer/illustrator of such popular children's books as George Shrinks and Bently & Egg) make Robots a joy to behold. The round, bouncy, and ramshackle forms of hero Rodney Copperbottom and his computer-animated friends are part of an ornate and daffy Rube-Goldberg universe of elaborate contraptions and gleaming metallic surfaces. Rodney (voiced with a hint-of-Scottish lilt by Ewan McGregor) is a young inventor who sets off for Robot City to work for Big Weld (Mel Brooks), the supreme inventor of the mechanical world. But upon his arrival, Rodney discovers that Big Weld has disappeared, and the slick, shiny Ratchet (Greg Kinnear) is phasing out the spare parts that lumpen robots need to function and replacing them with "upgrades"--expensive and glistening new exoskeletons. Unfortunately, from this suitable beginning, the story degenerates into a series of action sequences that make very little sense, though some are kinetic and fun (though others are only there to serve the inevitable Robots video game). Most kids will enjoy the sheer visual pleasure of the movie, but compared to the narrative richness of Pixar movies like The Incredibles and Toy Story, that pleasure is pretty short-lived. Also featuring the voices of Robin Williams, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent, Amanda Bynes, Jennifer Coolidge, and many, many more. --Bret Fetzer, Amazon.com