Children! More Oil!
Chris Wedge / Carlos Saldanha
Generally, I measure the success of a children’s film in regards to its ratio of fart jokes per minute. The higher the FJPM, the closer it is to the pinnacle of soul-crushing depravity that is Harland Williams’ Rocket Man. The lower the value, the more capable I am of maintaining an erection throughout the entire course of the film, and the happier I am. Don’t laugh, or more likely call the police. It’s fairly trying watching kid’s movies, so you have to you’re your kicks where you can. Unfortunately, despite its relatively low FJPM, Robots has no actual children in it, rendering the pederrific effects of this rating moot.
The film also lacks a story, which is perhaps a more pressing concern. This is not to say that the movie isn’t funny; it is. There are some really well thought out jokes and carefully crafted gags, provided your sole source of inspiration is the sort of puns your grandfather would tell after one too many snifters of brandy. The problem with Robots is that it seems as if the script was written by a bunch of really funny guys whose only experience of narrative was Duck Tales. A film like The Incredibles succeeds because it’s a great story that happens to be funny. Robots fails because it’s a funny joke that happens to have a story, and not much of one at that.
Essentially, Robots follows a young inventor, voiced by Ewan McGregor, who travels to Robot City so he can invent things better, or something like that. Once there, he meets several annoying sidekicks, spoiling him for choice when it comes time to pick some comic relief. He finally settles on Robin Williams, thankfully in animated form, because I do not need to see that much hair in one place ever again, thank you very much Good Will Hunting. McGregor then has to defeat an evil robot and find love all at the same time, a set of A and B plots so pedestrian it seems no surprise he walks through them. There’s no hint of tension in the entire film, and while this may not be enough to ruin it for children, for those of seeking something a little more stimulating, I recommend sticking to something that’ll really get the blood flowing. To the genitals.