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Sci-Fi - Invasion of Earth

Robot Overlords (2014)

Duration1h 30 m
RatingsUK: 12, USA: PG-13, Most other countries: 13.
Source of storyAn original screenplay
DirectorJon Wright
Writers/ScriptJon Wright, Mark Stay
StarringBen Kingsley, Gillian Anderson, Callan McAuliffe, Elia Hunt, Milo Parker, Steven Mackintosh, Geraldine James, Roy Hudd 
RatingsIMDb: 4.6 by 6,600 people. Rotten Tomatoes: 61% by 18 critics

Elevator Pitch: The world has been taken over by robots based in cubes which hover over the land, and have deployed flying and marching machines to keep the population within their houses. Going out may result in death. The humans are monitored, but when a boy finds out how to disable their implants he and three others go out to attempt to find the father of one of them. But the robots have employed humans to work for them, and one, Smythe, captures the young people and accidentally while using a mind probing device gives one the means of controlling the robots. This allows them to escape and continue the search.

Content: There is no sex or nudity, or drinking, smoking or anything else of real interest. We see that various robots at work, in one or two cases vapourising people. The young people escape from their house and wander about in the dark until captured by Smythe, who also fancies the mother of one of them making him vulnerable. We see a sort of brain scanning device in operation, which hurts and kills people. The once out of the city the kids find a group of rebels living in an abandoned mine and at one point a Spitfire is flown in action. 

A View:  The critics who did not like this much likened it to an episode of Dr Who, which it is. Nothing really works. I was most irritated by the failure in logistics. The young people find themselves in one place or another as if magically transported. Typically a boy is seen in a Spitfire and then within minutes is back with the rest of the rebels. And that’s not the worst of it. Alarmingly this turkey cost $21 million and has made less than 5% back. It just shows that these days you have to spend a fortune on special effects to convince an audience. So not even a watch for nothing, but not quite bad enough to be a Don’t Watch.

Additional Info: Despite the failure of the film one of the scriptwriters wrote a novel based on it which was published in 2015.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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