Saturday, December 11, 2010


Spoiler Level: High

So it's three years after the robot amusement park Delos went berserk, but thanks to a little PR spin, all the trouble is reported as having only happened in Westernworld.  So Westernworld is closed and replaced by Futureworld along with previous Delos parks Medievalworld, Romanworld, and a few other additional new parks.

Futureworld works as a good sequel to Westworld in that it takes the same concept, but instead of retreading the original it goes in a different direction with it.  Instead of the robots breaking down and killing all the guests, the robots have taken over the entire operation and are working on replacing key guests who will have influence in the outside world.  It's a good premise, and it's well served by the fact that it's not obvious at the outset.  I was expecting a retread and enjoyed the alternate take on the concept.

The downside is the actual execution of the concept.  The acting and the dialogue are rather stiff, but enjoyable in a B-movie kind of way.  The most enjoyable characters are supporting character Harry the mechanic and his faceless robot companion Clark.  Our heroes suddenly out of nowhere have guns, whose targets spark whenever they're hit, which was probably done to make it ambiguous if someone was a robot or a human (or a clone), but really just made me incorrectly assume that anyone who was shot had been a robot.  And Yul Brynner returns for one scene as the Gunslinger, which feels kind of shoehorned into the movie as a dream sequence.  And I'll totally cop to this being one of those stupid fanboy nitpicks, but it used way too many classic Star Trek sound effects for my liking.

I have to admit, after seeing both this movie and At the Earth's Core recently, which both came out in 1976, it's no wonder Star Wars blew the world's mind in 1977.

On the plus side, since the first movie ended on such a down note, I had no idea if the good guys were actually going to survive or not.  It's also got the first ever CGI sequences. And really, for all the faults I listed above, I still enjoyed it.  So like most sequels it's not as good as the original, but it was still a fun watch.

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