A.I. was Kubrick’s final project, which
was completed by Steven Spielberg. My opinions on
this film can be found in the usual place.

Premise

In the future, the ice caps have melted, and strict
population
control is in effect. Robots have been developed to
fulfill the needs
of mankind. For the first time, a robot with feelings
has been
produced, and it is given to a family that lost its
son to some
unspecified medical condition.

Cast, Crew, and Other Info

The star is Haley Joel Osment. The supporting
cast includes Jude Law,
Frances O’Connor, William Hurt, and even Robin
Williams in a rather
small role.

It was directed by Steven Spielberg, based on his own
rewrite of Ian
Watson’s script. Spielberg continued the project
that Stanley Kubrick
was working on at the time of his death.

The IMDB page with information on this movie and
links to information
about all people involved is here.

A.I. was originally released on Friday,
June 29, 2001.

High Point

The story is written in a four act format. The end
of the first act,
as heart-wrenching as it may be, was done perfectly.

Low Point

The entire fourth act felt tacked on. This should be
a two hour
movie, not two and a half hours.

The Scores

Kubrick’s work has always demonstrated
originality, and this
final project of his is no exception. This updated
Pinocchio has
presented ideas which have been seen before, but they
are presented
with a style, pace, and atmosphere that hasn’t quite
been seen like
this. (If I were to find a movie this resembled, I
think it would
have to be Blade Runner, and that fit seems
forced.)
Although the ideas are old, the method of
presentation and exploration
is rather new. I give it 4 out of 6.

Now it’s time to evaluate the effects. What
can I say about
them? When Teddy ran through dirt, the dust clouds
behind him looked
too circular. That’s my only complaint. This is a
2.5 hour movie,
with special effects in almost every shot, and the
only effect I have
even a minor quibble over is an inconsequential 5
second bit. I feel
compelled to give it 6 out of 6.

The story was a standard three act structure
with a fourth
act shoehorned on the end. (The standard three act
structure is
described over here,
on Bruce Campbell’s official website. When watching
A.I.,
the three act structure was pretty apparent. Just as
the third act
came to a natural and excellent conclusion, a fourth
act started. I
got the distinct impression this fourth act was there
for the sake of
providing a happy ending, and that’s it. It did
allow for some
interesting symbolic parallels between David and
Martin, but that
symbolism does not compensate for the atrocity that
is that sequence.
I give the story 3 out of 6. (It would have been 5
out of 6 without
that fourth act.)

If Haley Joel Osment manages to keep his head on
straight, unlike most
child actors, he’ll have a long and Oscar-filled
career ahead of him.
In this film, he does a fantastic job, but it’s a
little hard to
notice that, because he doesn’t stand out. His
incredible acting was
on par with the acting done by every other actor that
appeared on
screen. I have to give the acting 6 out of 6.

This is the point where I discuss the emotional
response
this
film provoked. I personally didn’t feel very
provoked by any
characters or events in this film, but I noticed that
a large portion
of the audience was crying at a few points in the
movie, so I’ll
assume that my response wasn’t typical. I’ll split
the difference,
and give it 4 out of 6.

This is a Steven Spielberg film based on a Stanley
Kubrick project,
with outside help from the fabulous John Williams,
Industrial Light
and Magic, and other incredibly talented people. On
the technical
level, this is flawless. I give the
production 6 out of 6.

The only serious problem with this film is the fourth
act.
Unfortunately, it’s a BIG problem. I give the film 4
out of 6 overall.

In total, A.I. receives 33 out of 42.

Further Comments

I’m not sure how many of these trailers shipped with
the film, and how
many were there because the theater put them there,
but the print I
saw showed full trailers for Harry Potter,
Ratrace,
and Osmosis Jones. It also had a teaser
trailer for The
Time Machine
.