Top 10 Best Robots in Movies

OK folks, I know its been a while since I posted, so I thought I would make an expression of geekdom. This is my top 10 movie robots of all time. I know there are a pile of Robots I left out (no cyborgs, clones, or mecha) but that would be because I hadn’t seen the film, or I simply thought other bots deserved to be ranked higher.

So here it is:

Robot10. Robot – Lost in Space, 1998
I actually liked this update of the 1965 tv series (which forecasted the earth running out of resources and forced to colonize space in 1997) and of course the classic Robot was also updated. It’s a very cool looking robot, WAY cooler than its predecessor, and even voiced by the same voice actor (Dick Tufeld) He even had the chance to say “Danger Will Robinson”

Dalek9. Daleks – Dr.Who and the Deleks, 1965
Ok, they might just look like a garbage can with a plunger sticking out of what passes for a midsection, but these babies struck fear in the hearts of Doctor Who fans for YEARS. Exterminate! Exterminate! How much cooler could you get? Ok, they ranked 9 so there is cooler, but common. They were a Nuclear power in the 60’s .. sorta.. that makes em scary cool.

Bicent8. Andrew Martin – Bicentennial Man, 1999
Robin Williams as a robot? How can you not like this? Ok, it wasnt my favourite movie, but it was one of the more likeable robots in movies in general. I just liked the character even if the movie wasnt earth shaking for me.

>J57. Johnny5 – Short Circuit, 1986
It’s an old story, robot created for destruction gains independant thought, becomes “alive”, but this one doesnt want to hurt anyone. In fact he’s downright against it. He craves to learn, to discover, and displays the fascination of a child while dragging around the most state of the art arsenal of weaponry on its back. Number 5 discovers what it means to be alive, and what is important in life. Not only was he very entertaining, he was enlightening.

Bishop6. Bishop – Aliens, 1986
Yeah he didn’t look much like a robot. But he was. Oh sure, he denied it, and prefered to be called “artificial human” but he was all Robot. And he kept his calm demeanour even after he was cut in half, and still made the effort to save Ripley’s hide in the end before finally pulling his plug. That’s cool in my books.

BNI5. Them – Batteries Not Included, 1987
Yeah, THEM. That is all I recall them being called in the movie. Little flying hubcaps with an uncanny knack to re-construct well, anything. I gotta get me one of those. They were adorably cute, and everyone loves a cute little robot that wants only to help. That and when they get jiggy the sparks actually do fly and they end up with even CUTER little robots.

Optimus4. Optimus Prime – Transformers: The Movie, 1986
Prime is animated, but no less a robot. He was the honourable leader of the Autobots, and the most cool semi turned warrior bot in existance. How can you not think of Optimus entering battle to the sounds of 80’s glam rock. “You’ve got the touch…” Yeah. You saw it just now in your head. If you didn’t you need to. The animation was better in the movie and we got to see Autobots use mild obscenities. Optimus is only in the first 15 minutes of the movie, but it was enough to impress an immortal movie moment into my memory. Optimus Rules.

BNI3. Terminator – The Terminator, 1984
Cold, calculating, unstopping. The Terminator became the worst case scenario of those who considered the advancement of computers and automation. Made you think twice before cursing at your computer for fear that someday in the future it might exact revenge. This is the ULTIMATE badguy robot. It has no feelings, you can’t reason with it, you can’t beg, you can’t even hope it will run out of batteries. And then just when you couldnt be more afraid of it, it says “Come with me if you want to live” There is hope. and it is STILL scary!

r2d22. R2-D2, Star Wars 1984
It pains me to rank any robot higher than this little fella. Could anyone ask for a more loyal companion? And really, did you ever undertand what this little bucket ever said? Did it matter? You just had to love him. He always came through, and he always knew what needed to be fixed and exactly how to fix it. Not even stairs, swamps, sand or forests could stop this determined sidekick from his dedicated path. He braved Jawas, multiple firefights, Ewok abduction, and casually manouevered through a battlefield full of Jedi. He’s been shot by an AT-ST and by Vader’s Tie. He even went toe to toe with Yoda over his master’s possessions. Fearless.

Iron Giant1. Iron Giant – The Iron Giant, 1999
The bigger they are, the bigger their heart. Can a robot have a heart? Well the tin man found his, and this massive pile of metal already has one, and he brought it with him. Much like Johnny5 this monstrosity seems created for destruction, and also has a childlike outlook on life. His companion in the movie is a little boy, and they form a friendship that tugs on the heart strings. The military finds out about this giant, and when threatened we see that he is more than capable of opening a can o whoopins. This robot has it all. You get caught up in his discovery, you get drawn into his new friendship, you feel that testosterone rise when he lets loose with the otherworldly weaponry and I dare you – I challenge you NOT to get misty before this movie ends.

Best. Robot. Ever.

  • You forgot the best one AMEE from the Red Planet….
    I watched her(yes it a she) startup scene more than 100 times!!!

  • sim

    How can you miss out Huey, Duey and Louis from ‘Silent Running’? When I was a kid I cried at the end of this film, a little robot standing over a flower with a watering can decorated with white fluffy rabbits while being blasted into space! These influenced Lucas on R2D2 and a similar robot to these appears in the Jawa’s transport in A New Hope.

  • I’ll let is slide because he’s more of a cyborg than a robot… But Robocop is sweet.

  • John Campea

    His name is Johnny 5, and he’s at #7 on the list above.

  • Christopher

    i am trying to find a movie with a robot in i remember (number 5 is alive ) was it called short circuit

  • Herby

    I thought Richard Grant had the inside track, but Anthony Stewart Head would make a wonderful Doctor.

    It is a new series. Six half hour to 45 minute episodes have been commisioned and they will be shown in 2005 (don’t know what month).

  • I am looking forward to the idea of Anthony Steward Head as a Doctor. I think he would be perfect for it.

    There was a radio style drama available in the UK not too long ago (I heard) with Head in it. Is he intended for a ressurection of the series?

    Is it a new series? or a movie?

  • Herby

    Remember Bakshi’s take on LOTR.

    Anyway the big difference with Hitch-hiker is that it has been Adams’s vision from the original Radio broadcast to the Books to the Series. His sense of the Bizarre has enabled each translation to have it’s own brilliance. Weather the film-makers can capture that insane brilliance remains to be seen, but I am sure I will be the first person on line when it does hit the theaters.

    BTW I forgot to say a big thank you for including “The Daleks”. I was once president of The Guardians of Gallifrey in Orlando and I am of course, a huge DW fan. Looking forward to the new series in 2005.

  • Well Tolkien was not available for consultation either, and that worked out wonderfully (the movies, not the “not having him” part)

    It is possible to produce a quality film, but the problem with Addams work is that its SO fantastical and surreal that each reader is likely to have taken his own imaginative look at the world of the Hitchhiker. I just hope its done right, at least for me.