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Archive for the ‘A.I.’ Category

A.I. – review – Film Comment #30

Film Comment – #30 – A.I. – Steven Spielberg – 2000


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Stanley Kubrick is the greatest director that has ever walked the face of the earth, and “A.I.” is the last relic of a film, that showcases any of his talent. It is not a Stanley Kubrick film, but it is Spielberg attempting to create a Kubrick film, and he comes damn close.

The film had been in production for about 30 years before it was finally released. Kubrick had the story, and even sketches of the futuristic landscapes for the film back in the 70’s. He felt film technology wasn’t readily available yet to create the film, and that’s when he turned to his friend Spielberg in the mid-80’s, suggesting that Steven direct the film, and he would produce it. Spielberg believed that Kubrick himself should direct the film, and the project continued it’s long stay in limbo. When Kubrick passed away, shortly after the release of his final masterpiece “Eyes Wide Shut”, Spielberg would soon be on his way to finally bringing “A.I.” to the screen.

The film centers around a family who are grieving the loss of their son in a coma. They are soon propositioned to have a new robot child given to them, a robot child that can love. The film is then separated into three parts. Part one follows the robot’s life with his new family, part two follows his exploration into the futuristic world in search of the blue fairy to make him a real live boy, and part three takes place in the distant future, when man-kind has vanished from the face of the earth.

Spielberg does his best to channel Kubrick. He has these hazy, fogged out scenes, uses Kubrick’s signature dissolves, and uses many of his camera techniques as well. He does a marvelous job of imitating the master. He crafts a loving ode to a genius who the film world will never forget. The futuristic landscape of “A.I.” is nothing short of amazing. It is a world that is reminiscent of “Blade Runner”. It is a visually stunning, and moving film.

The film focuses on comparing the young robot boy to the classic tale of “Pinnochio”. It’s been rumored that Kubrick even addressed “A.I.” as a modern day “Pinnochio”. It is actually the one concept of the film that seems to drag on and be a little bit too preachy at times. All in all the film works as a whole, and is a fantastic sci-fi tale. It was my #10 pick of 2001

Grade: A-