That’s right, touching.
From Blade Runner to Terminator to at least 30 percent of what made Battlestar Galactica great, violent robot revolt is nothing new. But 27-year old Irish filmmaker Ruairi Robinson, who was nominated for an Oscar for his animated short Fifty Percent Grey, tweaks the formula by shrinking the arena: This battlefield isn’t a galaxy, a solar system or even a planet; it’s just the lonely suburban home of a boy whose parents fight all day.
Max Record (Where the Wild Things Are) is fine as the angry son who hopes a new toy will solve all of his problems, but this movie belongs to the robot: More WALL-E than cylon, more R2-D2 than ED-209, and priced at just $999.99, Blinky is a machine the whole family can love. He catches, he cleans, he plays hide and seek, he’ll wait for you in the rain, and he just wants to be your friend….Until he doesn’t.
A warning here: Even though at its best Blinky speaks directly to the bloody-minded fifth-grader in all of us, we suggest watching the whole thing before showing it to children, or even squeamish adults.
Sheerly Avni is a San Francisco-based arts and culture writer. Her work has appeared in Salon, LA Weekly, Mother Jones, and many other publications. You can follow her on twitter at @sheerly.