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Old August 11 2009, 04:29 AM   #1
RobertScorpio
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A I..the movie

Saw this today on HBO hidef. It was better than i remebered, but I still think BICENTINAL MAN was the better of the two movies. I know that it was a KUBICK movie, and Spielberg finished it. But still feel that the movie seems disconnected from the viewers. Its good, but I didn't really get connected with Haley Osmet's android/character...

However, it is still a very good and thought out movie..just not my cup of tea....i give it an A for effort..a B- for final product.

Rob
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Old August 11 2009, 04:35 AM   #2
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Re: A I..the movie

I thought the acting was good and the FX/visual design was excellent but that the movie was about ten minutes too long with all the fake endings and too depressing.
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Old August 11 2009, 05:01 AM   #3
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Re: A I..the movie

A.I. was interesting, but not that enjoyable a movie.

Teddy stole every scene he was in though, loved him.
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Old August 11 2009, 05:38 AM   #4
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Re: A I..the movie

Teddy was just amazing.

If the academy had any guts, he would have won best supporting actor
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Old August 11 2009, 03:52 PM   #5
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Re: A I..the movie

A.I was atmospheric but confused at best. Thematically, what was it trying to say? Love is dangerous? Trying to gain artificial love is bad? Those seem to be in the area 95% of the movie was heading and then the super mechas show up. Maybe I just don't care for deus ex machina endings...
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Old August 11 2009, 04:20 PM   #6
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Re: A I..the movie

DarthPipes wrote: View Post
I thought the acting was good and the FX/visual design was excellent but that the movie was about ten minutes too long with all the fake endings and too depressing.
Yeah, that's the only thing that really hurt the movie for me. Otherwise, I think it's a minor classic.
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Old August 11 2009, 04:52 PM   #7
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Re: A I..the movie

The super-mechas don't revive the real woman, but create a duplicate. The mother's love is merely a copy which fools David, who then "dies." Her love is an illusion. Message applies to all love. The super-mechas are plot devices to bring that about, which is neiither a happy nor sentimental ending but it resolves the issue in a way the Blue Fairy "ending" would not.
Without the super-mecha ending, we would not know what would happen if David managed to get his mother's true love. Insofar as such a thing exists.

There is also the religious aspect, whether the creature can truly love its creator. Gigolo Joe's ultimate fate is not actually depicted but Joe's love for his women parallels David's for his mother, i.e., is programmed in. The people who felt the need for such mockery of love are shown to have failed. The super-mechas give David what he wants for no reason other than benevolence. Every other act, if I recall, by any human is selfishly motivated. The super-mechas' presence itself dramatizes the failure of humanity.
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Old August 11 2009, 05:35 PM   #8
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Re: A I..the movie

Lapis Exilis wrote: View Post
A.I was atmospheric but confused at best. Thematically, what was it trying to say? Love is dangerous? Trying to gain artificial love is bad? Those seem to be in the area 95% of the movie was heading and then the super mechas show up. Maybe I just don't care for deus ex machina endings...
I didn't find it confused at all. We were basically meant to wonder if we were watching a machine slowly develop a "soul" through his love and attachment to this human woman. And whether that love was really any different than the love we're programmed to have when we're born.

I saw the whole movie as an exploration of that idea. Humanity had created a whole new class of beings that seemed very much to be developing a sentience and self-awareness of some sort. And so what happens then? How to we treat them, what are our responsibilities? etc.

I think my favorite scene is when Joe-- who earlier seemed to not have a care in the world or a thought in his head-- suddenly turns and warns David about the humans, "They hate us, you know." And then he tells how the humans are jealous of the robots who will outlive them, etc. The fact even a love mecha like him could make such a profound observation clearly shows something deeper was going on.

I just think it's a brilliant, magical, and thought-provoking movie (even if it does have a few too many endings. lol).
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Old August 11 2009, 07:15 PM   #9
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Re: A I..the movie

stj wrote: View Post
The super-mechas don't revive the real woman, but create a duplicate. The mother's love is merely a copy which fools David, who then "dies." Her love is an illusion. Message applies to all love. The super-mechas are plot devices to bring that about, which is neiither a happy nor sentimental ending but it resolves the issue in a way the Blue Fairy "ending" would not.
Without the super-mecha ending, we would not know what would happen if David managed to get his mother's true love. Insofar as such a thing exists.
It's been a long time since I saw this film. I'm not sure I've seen it since it was released in 2001. But my thoughts on the finale then and now are somewhat different than yours.

David's quest is to find the Blue Fairy so that she will transform him into a 'real' human being, which he believes will allow for his 'mother' to truly love him. This is an impossible quest. The Blue Fairy comes from a child's tale, and when David finally finds her, she is revealed to be an artifact from Coney Island. David simply cannot be made into a 'real' human -- it is an impossible technological leap in the world of the film. And even if he were a 'real' human being instead of one artificially created, it is ultimately irrelevent. David is a temporary replacement for the child that she gave birth to, and whether he is flesh and blood or not would make no difference.

The Super-Mechas are Spielberg giving into his worst tendencies. They're a plot device for him to give David what is impossible--his mother's everlasting love. Silliness surrounding their ability to bring back his mother from a lock of hair (but only for one day, and never again!) only compounds the contrivance. The message is not love is an illusion, but rather, all you need is love, for this day is the happiest in David's life. That the love is a recreation doesn't matter--David cannot tell the difference.

Ending with the Blue Fairy would have been perfectly satisfactory, since it dramatizes both that David's goal is unattainable and that David childlike state cannot comprehend this (he continuously asks the Blue Fairy to turn him into a real boy).

But Spielberg gave us the happier ending. He defends himself in Richard Schickel's film Spielberg on Spielberg, claiming that the sentimental ending (his description) was Kubrick's and not his. But Kubrick shot endings that were never used for 2001: A Space Odyssey and Dr. Strangelove. He was not infallable, and changed his mind about things he had written earlier. The reality is Spielberg fell back on the ending that fit his sentimental leanings (this is the director who would go back and change the ending to Close Encounters of the Third Kind if he had the ability--not happy enough) and justified it to himself because it was originally Stanley's idea.
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Old August 11 2009, 07:36 PM   #10
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Re: A I..the movie

Harvey wrote: View Post

Ending with the Blue Fairy would have been perfectly satisfactory, since it dramatizes both that David's goal is unattainable and that David childlike state cannot comprehend this (he continuously asks the Blue Fairy to turn him into a real boy).

But Spielberg gave us the happier ending. He defends himself in Richard Schickel's film Spielberg on Spielberg, claiming that the sentimental ending (his description) was Kubrick's and not his. But Kubrick shot endings that were never used for 2001: A Space Odyssey and Dr. Strangelove. He was not infallable, and changed his mind about things he had written earlier. The reality is Spielberg fell back on the ending that fit his sentimental leanings (this is the director who would go back and change the ending to Close Encounters of the Third Kind if he had the ability--not happy enough) and justified it to himself because it was originally Stanley's idea.
Agreed!

Like the OP, I just watched this on HBO for the first time probably since I saw it in the theater. I''m glad he started this thread because I wanted to talk about AI as well. I remember liking the movie up until the mystical Close Encounters aliens... I mean "mecha". That Ending just felt so flat and contrived. I've also read that it was Kubrick's ending and not Spielberg's, but I'm not sure how much of that I buy.

Like Harvey, I've always felt that the natural ending would have been David forever asking the Blue Fairy for his boyhood. It might have been somewhat of a downer, but it speaks of how much David was willing to give for his desire to be love. In doing so, it also speaks to all of our desires to go to great lengths to be loved. We may not always get what we want, but it never stops us from trying. That is what it means to be human, and it inadvertently makes David as human as the rest of us.
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Old August 11 2009, 07:43 PM   #11
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Re: A I..the movie

By Harvey's interpretation, the Blue Fairy ending means that love is impossible. Which may not be sentimental, but is even sillier than the super-mecha ending. Or the movie is saying that Pinocchio is a childish fairy tale. This doesn't work either, because Pinocchio is about boys growing up or turning into asses. Which is true, so the Blue Fairy ending is bad that way too.

Admiral Jarok's view of the climax about David becoming human by endlessly trying strikes me as forgetting what Pinocchio is about. And there's no endless.

A day of false happiness given by a copy, an illusion that can't be sustained (that's why for only one day,) then death. I suppose you could arbitrarily focus on the temporary happiness and dismiss everything around it, and decide that is a happy ending. If a romantic comedy ended with the wedding and the bridal suite, then the happy couple died in their sleep, you could call it a sentimental happy ending too?

If you just can't accept the super-mechas (indeed, it is easy to confuse them with Roswell aliens,) then the ending falls flat. If you take the mother copy as somehow the real thing, then it fails as sentimental tripe as well.
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Old August 11 2009, 07:50 PM   #12
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Re: A I..the movie

Harvey wrote: View Post
The Super-Mechas are Spielberg giving into his worst tendencies. They're a plot device for him to give David what is impossible--his mother's everlasting love. Silliness surrounding their ability to bring back his mother from a lock of hair (but only for one day, and never again!) only compounds the contrivance. The message is not love is an illusion, but rather, all you need is love, for this day is the happiest in David's life. That the love is a recreation doesn't matter--David cannot tell the difference.

Ending with the Blue Fairy would have been perfectly satisfactory, since it dramatizes both that David's goal is unattainable and that David childlike state cannot comprehend this (he continuously asks the Blue Fairy to turn him into a real boy).
I agree that would have been a much more powerful ending, but I also think jumping the story forward in time was a great homage to Kubrick, and felt very much like something he would have left in there himself. Plus the idea of future robots digging David out of the ice as the last connection to humanity's existence IS a pretty cool one I think.

And as contrived as the mother's recreation is, I am starting to warm to it over time. It's sentimental, yes, but there's also something really moving about the way David cares for her and protects her from the knowledge of her new life-- it's not the completely selfish love he displayed at the beginning; now he genuinely cares for her, which is a pretty big step for him to take.

And the entire story IS a kind of scifi fairy tale, so I guess it's only fitting that David would find some kind of happy ending.
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Old August 11 2009, 07:56 PM   #13
Admiral Jarok
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Re: A I..the movie

stj wrote: View Post
^^^By your interpretation, the Blue Fairy ending means that love is impossible. Which may not be sentimental, but is even sillier than the super-mecha ending. Or the movie is saying that Pinocchio is a childish fairy tale. This doesn't work either, because Pinocchio is about boys growing up or turning into asses. Which is true, so the Blue Fairy ending is bad that way too.

A day of false happiness given by a copy, an illusion that can't be sustained (that's why for only one day,) then death. I suppose you could arbitrarily focus on the temporary happiness and dismiss everything around it, and decide that is a happy ending. If a romantic comedy ended with the wedding and the bridal suite, then the happy couple died in their sleep, you could call it a sentimental happy ending too?

If you just can't accept the super-mechas (indeed, it is easy to confuse them with Roswell aliens,) then the ending falls flat.
I'm not saying love is impossible, far from it. I don't think it took that one day with his mother to prove that David loved. I think he showed his ability to love through his actions and his journey that brought him to the "Blue Fairy".

It's not so much a problem with sentimentality that I have as it's a problem with the ham-fisted way the ending was done. I think the point is made with what I said above, but Spielberg felt that maybe enough people would get it. Thus enter the "super mechas".
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Old August 11 2009, 08:46 PM   #14
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Re: A I..the movie

stj wrote: View Post
By Harvey's interpretation, the Blue Fairy ending means that love is impossible. Which may not be sentimental, but is even sillier than the super-mecha ending. Or the movie is saying that Pinocchio is a childish fairy tale. This doesn't work either, because Pinocchio is about boys growing up or turning into asses. Which is true, so the Blue Fairy ending is bad that way too.
I don't think it means that love is impossible. As others have indicated, David proves his ability to love through his actions. But it does indicate that the love of his 'mother' is impossible. The Super-Mecha ending admits this, but finds a contrived way to give David that love anyway. It's not needed.
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Old August 11 2009, 10:51 PM   #15
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Re: A I..the movie

Lapis Exilis wrote: View Post
A.I was atmospheric but confused at best. Thematically, what was it trying to say? Love is dangerous? Trying to gain artificial love is bad? Those seem to be in the area 95% of the movie was heading and then the super mechas show up. Maybe I just don't care for deus ex machina endings...
The film seemed like pointless misery to me. And stylistically speaking, Kubrick to Spielberg is a bit jarring.
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