Based on the Robot short stories by Isaac Asimov, I, Robot is set in 2035, when robots have become the all-purpose assistant for virtually every household. But just before the newest robot model is released in mass, Detective Del Spooner (Will Smith) is called to investigate the death of his friend and robotics genius, Dr. Alfred Lanning (James Cromwell). Though it appears a suicide, Spooner is skeptical, suspecting that one of Lanning’s robots, Sonny (Alan Tudyk), tossed him through a window to his death. The problem is that robots aren’t supposed to be able to hurt humans — it’s a law hardwired into their computer brains. Fighting against the complete trust that everyone has in robots, Spooner and Dr. Susan Calvin (Bridget Moynahan) work to prove that Sonny did kill Dr. Lanning and that the robots roaming the streets are an imminent danger to humanity.
I, Robot is easily one of the best science-fiction movies in recent years. Will Smith carries the film, adding comic relief and present-day sensibilities to Asimov’s futuristic fantasy world. The story is solid and entertaining but also deals with the interesting issues surrounding computers and artificial intelligence. For instance, one robot seems to have emotions and a developed self-consciousness while another makes decisions that bend it’s hardwired rules. Unfortunately, Dove cannot award the Dove Seal to I, Robot, due to objectionable language, violence and brief nudity.