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mandag 11. november 2013

Netflix Premiere: November 10th 2013 - Robot & Frank (Schreier)

The pantheon of silver screen robots may have a new member. Retired burglar Frank is given a robot to care for him in his old age, as his son worries about his episodes of disorientation and deteriorating memory. Frank is very sceptic, and in the beginning he just wants to turn the damn thing off. Reluctantly, he warms to it and, of course, starts treating it as his partner in crime. With such a loyal partner, Frank wonders if he might just have one last heist in him.


Robot & Frank is director Jake Schreier's first full length feature. Frank Langella continues to show his versatility as an actor, his comic timing and grumpy, deadpan deliveries are spot on. And all the while it is hard to watch him and not think of his powerful Nixon from Frost/Nixon. His Frank is an interesting character, and Langella manages to convey the character's resentment of what his life has come to, the strain in his relations with family and his continued compulsion to lift objects from stores. 

This movie is genuinely well written, with a compelling character at its center. The dialogues between Frank and the Robot are funny (like when Frank tells it how to get kids to stop bugging it: "Just say 'Self-destruction sequence initiated, and count down from ten'") and the idea of him training it as an accomplish is clever and well executed. It's well acted, with good parts for good actors - like Susan Sarandon and Peter Sarsgaard.

From the quirky and benign Johnny 5 of Short Circuit to the destructive Terminator, movie robots run the gamut.

Terminator - None more iconic









Number 5 - None more charming











 The robot in Robot & Frank is a sort of 'blonde' robot, if such a thing makes sense. He can learn, but has few programmed skills from the start as its role is supposed to be a loyal servant with a little something to offer conversationally. Frank has to teach it everything about honor among thieves and the practical aspects of lock-picking, casing and breaking into places.

Imdb's: Jake Schreier, Robot & Frank, Frank Langella, Susan Sarandon, Liv Tyler, Peter Sarsgaard

Cute article on 10 famous movie robots

A Complete Illustrated History of Robots in the Movies

List of other Robot movies

Trailer

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