Robota, Birds, & The Big Green Hulk

Every week, Vern Seward takes a look at Appleis latest offerings at the QuickTime Trailer site, letting your know whatis new.

Early last year we stumbled onto a Web site that was truly intriguing. The site seemed to be dedicated to an animated movie that featured robots. At that time, the site only had hand-drawn pictures and a short ianimation testi which showed a large robot walking toward you. There was also music worthy of any feature epic. The site was most intriguing because all of the effort that went into creating it -- the graphics and animation, and the music -- was not for a movie, but for the sole purpose of promoting an illustrated book; Robota: Reign of Machines.

It has been some time since we last visited that site, so imagine our surprise when we saw an Apple Exclusive QuickTime trailer on Appleis site with the title of the aforementioned book. If the still images and the music is intriguing, then the trailer, which is fully animated, totally knocked our socks off. The trailer can be described with two words: awesomely beautiful.

The story-line of Robota may be familiar in a general way: in some future time humans are oppressed by robots but one man leads a rag-tag group of rebels to overthrown the oppressors. Even if you heard something like this before (The Matrix being only one of a long line of such stories), the full story is worth looking into, and the artwork is worthy of a gallery showing.

We still find it strange that so much effort has gone into promoting a book. The creator of Robota, Doug Chiang, says that he has bigger plans for his story to include other media. We certainly hope Mr. Chiang considers bringing Robota to the big screen; it would be wonderful to see the worlds he has created come to life in 70mm glory. We urge you to check out the Robota trailer, and the bookis Web site.

Speaking of beauty, another QuickTime Exclusive Trailer offers a birdis eye view of the natural beauty of our own planet in our own time. Winged Migration is a documentary about birds, but donit let that put you off from at least peeking at the trailer. Words fail to describe the beauty director Jacques Perrin has captured on film.

Winged Migration is a Sony Pictures Classic movie, and so is Levity, starring Billy Bob Thornton, Morgan Freeman, Holly Hunter, and Kirsten Dunst. Billy Bob Thornton plays Manual Jordan, a man recently released from prison after serving 19 years for killing a store clerk during a robbery. Manual tries to find a way to redeem himself. This movie looks to be of the caliber of Sling Blade, which won an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay in 1996.

Other movies to check out:

  • The Hulk: Heis big. Heis green. Heis extremely mean. If you havenit seen this trailer, then you have to be wondering what all the hubbub is about. Some feel that the CGI Hulk is too CGI and they point at the last scene in the trailer as proof. We like this Hulk better than Lou Ferrigno in a prosthetic nose and green wig. Check it out and judge for yourself.
  • How to Deal: Pretty Mandy Moore stars in this coming of age movie about a girl discovering the ins and outs of relationships. Itis a chick flick/date movie, but sometimes such movies are fun to watch.
  • 2 Fast, 2 Furious: Is it possible to have a Fast and the Furious movie without Vin Diesel? It seems weill find out. Fast and the Furious centered on an undercover cop named Brian OiConnor played by Paul Walker. In 2 Fast, Mr. Walker returns as Brian OiConnor but this time heis trying to infiltrate a Miami racing club. Eye candy for the ladies is provided this time by singer/actor Tyrese. It hard to tell if this one will go over big or flop like a fish out of water.

Thatis a wrap for this week. If you havenit already we urge you to take our advice and check out Robota. You wonit be sorry.