First Floor - Artistry

Driven in A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001)

Designer: Tim Flattery and Alessandro Zezza
Builder: Trans FX
Based on: n/a

In a future where resources are scarce, mechas (robots) are manufactured to serve the needs of humans and prevent overpopulation. Though mechas grow more intelligent and human-like as technology advances, humans continue to treat them as subhuman and disposable objects. The Cricket highlights that psychological and physical dividing line when it removes child mecha David (Haley Joel Osment) from his picture-perfect human family in the suburbs and delivers him to the dark woods where mechas are taken when no longer wanted.  

Based on the short story Supertoys Last All Summer Long, the film adaptation was originally developed by Stanley Kubrick but passed on to Steven Spielberg when Kubrick died. Like the short story, the film raises questions about the fate of humanity and what it means to be human in a world full of intelligent machines, including vehicles. In the film, keeping mechas “in their place” reveals man’s own insecurity and fear that one day technology will become all-powerful.

Courtesy of Warner Bros. Corporate Archive