The robots of Interstellar

WAIT! If you haven't seen the new Christopher Nolan movie Interstellar don't read any further - SPOILERS!

Ok, ready? Kathryn and I went to see Interstellar at the IMax a couple of days ago. We both enjoyed the movie however we wished the film would have spent more time explaining some of the science proposed in the movie, instead of spending so much time with Matt Damon's transparent character. There were some pretty cool concepts about quantum mechanics touched on that could have had a little more detail added to them.

The movie is visually amazing. The CGI is practically seamless and I never found myself being distracted by the impossibility of the graphics.

Which brings me to the robots. Wired magazine just had an article with a little background to the robot concepts in the movie. It seems that 80% of the robots shown on screen were produced in camera. Very little CGI was used to animate the robots. In the age of Transformers and Iron Man it's nice that the production crew actually built the robots and manipulated them in camera. This definitely adds a sense of physicality and realism.

The robots are rectangular metal boxes. Refreshingly non-humanoid looking. I'm sure there are a few more than I am remembering, but I can't name another movie robot other than R2D2 that didn't at least have some kind of humanoid face. 

The robots named "TARS" and "CASE" have a variety of configurations that made them very versatile and actually believable as research tools in the movie. Despite their lack of a face the actors voicing the robots did a convincing job of building their character.

Overall the movie was entertaining and at times thought provoking. I don't think it will end up in the pantheon of great science fiction like Stanley Kubrik's 2001, but it's great to watch a science fiction movie that doesn't include aliens trying to kill everyone.