Re: A.I. the movie/Kubrick

From: Damien Broderick (
Date: Fri May 04 2001 - 20:24:56 MDT

At 07:46 PM 4/30/01 -0400, Brian wrote:

>Yeah, I am dreading another go around of Star Trek's "the android who
>wanted to become human". Wasn't that just done a year or two ago in that
>idiotic Bicentennial Man movie? Oh well, we can hope...

No, abandon hope right now.

I've just read an advance proof of Brian W. Aldiss's new collection
SUPERTOYS LAST ALL SUMMER LONG, which also contains the two short sequels
he wrote, after exhaustive discussions with Kubrick and Spielberg, to the
short piece that was the seed to the movie A.I.. Indications are that the
script has deviated very greatly from these pieces, but the key notion (as
often in Brian's work) is not just the robotopinnochio trope--silly as that
as--but a bleak, relentless assertion that most humans, most of the time,
are exactly `robotic' in the dreariest sense. A standard example from
`Supertoys in Other Seasons':

< Henry seized the boy and held him tightly, arms wrapped around him.
`David, you were an early product of my first mech company, Synthank. You
have since been superseded. You only think you are happy or sad. You only
think you loved Teddy or Monica [Henry's dead wife].'
        `Did you love Monica, Daddy?'
        He sighed heavily. `I thought I did.' >

The closing lines of the final story are dreadfully inevitable:

< [David] sat up. His hand went to his head. His expression was one of
amazement. `Daddy! What a strange dream I had. I never had a dream before...'
        `Welcome back, David, my boy,' said Henry.
        Embracing the child, he lifted David off the bench. David and Teddy stared
at each other in wonder. Then they fell into each other's arms.
        It was almost human. >

Damien Broderick

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