Androids, as we all know are designed to act and look like humans. Since 1950’s with Asimov’s I robot, they maintained a pivotal role in sci-fi movies, giving the viewer a depiction of life and war in space. But, with the development of science and technology, they may become a part of our everyday lives.
The three laws of robotics, or Asimov’s laws are:
– A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
– A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
– A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.
Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics were written in 1942. and of course, since then these aren’t the only three laws that are known. Many authors after Asimovadded their own in order to create different artificial humans. Some of them want to be human, like Data in Star Trek:The next generation, others become furious because of unmindful humans, and some remained ambiguous to the idea of good and evil.
The reason I love androids in movies is because movies featuring these characters doesn’t necessarily revolve around their stories, but they often question what it means to be human, and what distinguishes us from androids. Every android has its’ own characteristics, but what is interesting is that in many situations they end up being more human than us. Also, these characters sometimes show bigger problems of the real world, like misogyny(gynoids) or racism(like Blade Runner), so it’s always interesting to find their messages hidden in the movie plot.
There are many examples of androids in movies, but which of these actually surpass the borders of human and machine? This list maybe doesn’t hold a definite answer,, but it sure has some of my favorite best and well known androids from the long history of sci-fi movies.
Futura, Fritz Lang’s movieMetropolis
Futura a gynoid, and deserves to be here, because she’s the very first robot that was depicted on screen. She’s is named Maria for her human form, and Futura for Maria’s evil twin transformation. Futura is the perfect example of Frankenstein’s complex, where the creation turns against the creator. This kind of depiction was and still is very popular, and we can see the influence of this movie, as with all Lang’s creations echoing through the years.
Ash, Ridley Scott, Alien
The famed corpsec android with a secret mission, portrayed by the famed Ian Holm represents the highest achievement of Weyland-Yutani cybernetics division, sending him to deep space to obtain the much wanted Xenomorph XX121, or as we call them, an Alien. The unforgettable famous superweird magazine-attempted-murder scene and the line about the Xenomorph «I admire its’ purity» make him easily one of my top picks for best villain ever.
Roy Batty, Ridley Scott, Blade Runner
Roy Batty, the main antagonist(?) in Scott’s neo-noir, one of the greatest sci-fi movies, has everything that you expect from android. He is highly inteligent, fast, skilled in combat, but he is struggling in dealing with unknown emotions. I love this character because of his struggle with a humanity that doesn’t accept diversity, but also because he shows that the more one struggles against the powers that be, the more one arrives closer to the point of becoming extinguished..He demands answers for his bleak condition and is angry at his creator, but he craves something that is unexpected – he craves for life.
Bishop, James Cameron, Aliens
An android that grasps the necessity of political correctness of deep space – preferring the term „Artificial person“.One thing that I love about him is that he follows completely Asimov’s rules of robotics, he is not programmed to kill, so he has to remind everyone that is impossible for him to harm a person. And still, he still gets to show his badass side in the famed knife trick scene. I just love the dumb look on Bill Paxton’s face, in a plethora of famous dumb moments of his in this film («Game over man, game over!»).
Data, Gene Roddenberry, Star Trek: The Next Generation
Data is more than just an «artificial human», he fully surpasses both man and machine, becoming metahuman in the process. Being immune to all biological diseases, and can survive on almost every place that carbon-based lifeforms would find hostile. he is the smartest and fastest member of the crew. In an effort to understand his creators, he manages to mimic human emotions, thus growing into a funny, loveable and theatrical character.
David 8, Ridley Scott, Prometheus
David 8 was, in my opinion, the best thing about the much anticipated Scott’s blockbuster, that turned out to be an incredibly dull(did anyone say dumb?) movie. When we take a look at the portrayal of characters in the film, David sticks out as one of the most developed. Well mannered, moral, rational, but remaining on the side of pragmatism. He hints a bit at the aforementioned Frankenstein complex when speaking of the patricidal ideas of all creatures with regard to the ones who made them. Plus, Michael Fassbender is awesome whatever he does.
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