Stupendous visuals only barely make up for a forgettable story and characters7/10
The first 2005 film I've seen, and, really, it's the only one released so far this year that I have had even the littlest desire to see at the theater. It was worth seeing, but it's forgettable. The visuals are absolutely eye-popping. The film's best sequence is a Rube Goldberg-esque public transportation system across town. I think if that had gone on for 90 minutes, we would have had some kind of masterpiece on our hands. Instead, we get a dull story of a group of nearly outmoded robots rebelling against an evil company that is no longer building spare parts. The head of that company used to be all for the common folk, but he's disappeared and left a despot in his place. The underground area, where they melt scrap, is really cool, and reminded me of The Nightmare Before Christmas. Madame Gasket, who rules this part of the city, was the most interestingly designed character. Robin Williams is very annoying, but, to his credit, he is playing a character here, not just himself. I wasn't thinking "Man, is Robin Williams annoying," but rather, "Man, that character Robin Williams is playing is annoying." I doubt that could be taken as much of a compliment, though. All of the other main characters are especially forgettable, especially Halle Berry's character, who is supposedly the female lead. I think most of the audiences wanted the protagonist to end up with the second female lead, who is a tad more interesting. And I think the filmmakers realized this, too, because the hero only barely ends up with Berry at the end. The movie is also in need of laughs. I chuckled a bit, but that was all. The funniest moment is the robot who does the robot dance. As much as I can complain, though, I would still highly recommend (renting) it for the visuals alone.