I, Robot

DVD Rating: **1/2

Reviewed by: Josh Morrall

Read Gary Duncan's film review of I, Robot
I, Robot

The first thing you notice about this single disc edition of I, Robot is the amazing interactive menus. These are well designed and fit in with the futuristic mise-en-scene of the film.

The first of the three commentaries features director Alex Proyas and screenwriter Akiva Goldsman. This is not a one sided commentary, as I feared. Goldsman is given as much time as he needs to talk about the background of the story, while Proyas provides detail about the actors and the creation of the environment. This is a faultless commentary in terms of information, with very little humour to keep things light.

Copy picture

The second commentary features a wide array of crew members, from production designer to computer imaging supervisor. It comes in segments, with one person at a time focussing on a different part of the film. Because of the nature of the track, there are large sections of silence, which are not truly made up for by the voices of the crew, who are rarely engaging. They do, however, provide a substantial amount of information, even if what they are saying does not always correspond with what you see on screen, as parts of this track are obviously taken from other interviews.

The third commentary is an isolated score, with occasional voice-over from composer Marco Beltrami. There is only so much that he can talk about and his commentary suffers as a result, although the quality and time spent becomes increasingly apparent. This track is for music enthusiasts only, as Beltrami assumes he is talking to people who understand about the field of film scoring.

The main special feature is the Making Of. At 12 minutes, it is by no means a substantial extra and is not fulfilling, due to its wide scope. This means that there is no opportunity to go into significant detail in any area of the production. That said, there is an arresting segment on the creation of the robots, including an interview with the movement consultant, who happens to be the star of Strictly Ballroom. There is little Behind The Scenes footage, but what we do get is of fair quality, with shots of the actors playing the robots running around in green leotards to provide much needed comic relief in a film that takes itself very seriously.

The Stills Gallery includes conceptual art and photographs from on and off set. The artwork is limited to designs for the robots that are disappointing. Sketches of the cityscapes would have been appreciated.

Inside Look features trailers for Alien Versus Predator and Elektra. There is a brief MTV-style Making Of for Elektra, which seems unwarranted on this disc. Anyone planning on going to see the upcoming Daredevil sequel, however, it might be worth checking out.

For only a little more, you can purchase the far more enthralling and substantial two disc DVD. However, for those who are not great fans of extras, the Making Of will provide all you need for the background of the film.

A decent single disc edition, with impressive three audio commentaries, sounds like a worthy purchase for the money, although endlessly inferior to its two-disc big brother.

Reviewed on: 13 Dec 2004
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I, Robot packshot
Will Smith saves the world again, this time from robots.
Amazon link

Product Code: 24232DVD

Region: 2

Ratio: 2.35:1

Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1

Extras: Three Commentaries; Making Of; stills gallery; Inside Look

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