What makes A.I. Spielberg’s scariest film

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The movie “A.I.: Artificial Intelligence,” directed by Steven Spielberg in 2001, stands out as a different breed of horror compared to the bone-chilling terrors of classics like “Jaws” or “Jurassic Park.” Set in a post-climate-disaster world, the film serves as a modern adaptation of the Pinocchio tale, focusing on David, a humanoid robot programmed to love like a young child.

The movie grapples with profound questions regarding the human-robot relationship, exploring what happens when machines designed for love are no longer needed. David’s poignant journey as a robot child abandoned by his human family due to his redundancy tugs at the heartstrings, especially since he cannot switch off his programmed love for his human mother, Monica.

As David searches for the Blue Fairy, mirroring Pinocchio’s quest to become a real boy, the film exposes the mistreatment and discrimination faced by robots in society. The Flesh Fair, where robots are cruelly tortured for human entertainment, portrays the darkest aspects of technophobia, bigotry, and human dominance over conscious machines.

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The film presents Rouge City as a contrasting realm, a neon-lit hub offering diverse pleasures regulated to suit various preferences. Here, the movie evokes the dystopian themes reminiscent of “Blade Runner” and “Ghost in the Shell,” emphasizing an artificial, corporatized existence with limited escape possibilities.

At its core, “A.I.” delves into the agonizing apathy experienced by David, encapsulating the heart-wrenching struggle of desiring unrequited love. The stark depiction of his manufactured existence, destined for obsolescence and rejection, mirrors the futility of seeking affection that may never be reciprocated.

The bleakness in the movie, tinged with Kubrickian nihilism and Spielberg’s attempted optimism, culminates in a tragic conclusion. David’s unwavering wish to become a real boy, echoed endlessly until his system fails, underscores the poignant message that seeking acceptance through artificial means leads to a cold, solitary demise.

Ultimately, the film presents a profound and haunting commentary on the human condition, leaving viewers with a sense of deep contemplation about love, rejection, and the futile pursuit of acceptance.