Hollywood has churned out umpteen movies revolving around 'man and the machines' theme.
Shawn Levy takes the unbeaten path as he gives us a Robot movie which is nothing like any of the robot films you must have seen earlier.
Based on the 1956 short story Steel by Richard Matheson, the film is a thrilling humanistic drama which entertains you to the core. It unravels the nuances of the complex relationship between a father and his estranged son set against the backdrop of boxing robots.
The year is 2020. 'Robot wrestling' is the most popular and money making sport. Former boxer Charlie (Hugh Jackman) is now a broken man with bills to pay. He gets into the business by hoping his only bet, a 'former champion' Robot would rescue him from the financial crisis if thrown in the ring.
Meanwhile, circumstances force Charlie to face his estranged son Max (Dakota Goyo). The two see no future together but decide to put-up with each other while Charlie makes some money. Max too gets involved in the robot version of the WWE tournament. If Charlie is brawn, 11 year old Max is the brain behind their fighter robot. Will the futuristic boxing tournament bridge the gap between an abandoned son and his dejected father?
Real Steel is a real relief as it is not like Terminator or Transformers or any other lesser known Robot film. No one is killing each other, there are no conniving people who double cross each other for survival and no blood or bullets are spilled.
Though it's fictional, everything about the film seems real...the fights, relationships, re-discovery of self belief in the lead character.
As far as the boxing of robots is concerned, it is pretty much like any movie on boxing. An underdog takes on the champion...who wins?
What sets the film apart is the treatment and the incredible CGI. Your jaws drop when you see those eight feet tall mighty giant robots enter the ring! The sound effects are mind blowing, especially when the robots punch each other.
The bond shared between the father and his son and their robot is endearing.
Little Dakota Goyo deserves a special mention. The kid renders a fine performance and holds your attention even when sharing scenes with Jackman or the robot! Goyo is brilliant. Watch out for his dance moves too. He acts like a pro without losing the vulnerability and naivety you expect from a boy his age.
Hugh Jackman as the former boxer Charlie overdoes his 'boxing' act a bit but touches your heart whenever he engages himself in banter with his son or girlfriend. Evangeline Lilly plays Bailey, Charlie's only support system. The actress renders a mature performance too.
Unpretentious characters, honest performances, unconventional yet comprehensible storyline and stunning action make 'Real Steel' a fun film, one should not miss out on especially if you like WWE! Take your family along. <?xml:namespace prefix = fck />