Monday, 12 December 2016

Short Circuit Review

Short Circuit

Release Date: 26th June 1986 - Australia

Production Companies
TriStar Pictures (presents)
Producers Sales Organisation 
Turman-Foster Company

Roadshow Distribution 

Genre: Sci-Fi/Family

Rating: PG

Runtime: 94 minutes

Budget: $9,000,000

Box Office Gross: $40,697,761 

Plot Summary
In a one-in-a-million accident, the most sophisticated weapon on earth has escaped. He's called Number 5 and he's come to the conclusion that he's alive! 

Now the scientist who created him wants to take him apart. The company that owns him wants him recovered before the weapons he carries kill millions. And the ex-marine security chief simply wants to blow him up.

Then there's Stephanie who truly believes that Number 5 is alive...but can she save him?

Tim Blaney - Number 5 (Voice)
Ally Sheedy - Stephanie Speck
Steve Guttenberg - Newton Crosby
Fisher Stevens - Ben Jabituya
Austin Pendleton - Howard Marner
G.W. Bailey - Skroeder
Brian McNamara - Frank
Marvin J. McIntyre - Duke
John Garber - Otis
Penny Santon - Mrs. Cepeda
Vernon Weddle - General Washburne
Barbara Tarbuck - Senator Mills
Fred Slyter - Norman
Billy Ray Sharkey - Zack

Director - John Badham 
Writers - S.S. Wilson and Brent Maddock
Executive Producers - Mark Damon and John Hyde
Supervising Producer/Second Unit Director - Gregg Champion
Producers - David Foster and Lawrence Turman 
Co-Producer - Dennis Jones
Art Director - Dianne Wager
Robots Designer/Consultant - Syd Mead
Director of Photography - Nick McLean
Robots Engineer and Robotic Effects Supervisor - Eric Allard
Animatronic Performance Supervisor/Puppeteer - Tony Urbano
Film Editor - Frank Morriss
Sound Designer - Frank Serafine
Music - David Shire

The SHORT CIRCUIT series were a favourite part of my childhood, unfortunately I missed the first movie when it first released on pay-tv. However I watched the sequel instead when a few years later it was shown on the Movie Extra channel. In recent years, the robot from SHORT CIRCUIT, Number 5 (aka Johnny 5) inspired another iconic robot character with mannerisms and image alike to No. 5's and his name was WALL-E. Hilarious and goofy is SHORT CIRCUIT a family comedy that not only it keeps the laughter ongoing for adults and young children, it pulls your heartstrings which in some cases feels like you're watching a Disney movie. John Badham was an underrated film director who was benevolently clever at helming this picture than he does to his other films like SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER and WARGAMES (click here). Somehow he doesn't get enough credit for his contribution to the film industry.

Steve Guttenberg was convincing as the scientist who is responsible for getting the machine operational. The other cast members were all believable in their roles and created a very fun and heartfelt atmospheric movie. I would like to give a honourable mention to Fisher Stevens for his outstanding role as the offensive racial stereotype. The mechanical effects were not groundbreaking or revolutionary, however they were convincingly believable and really helps send the message that the robots can be made.

SHORT CIRCUIT is not your typical family feature, it's a little more unique and different what people usually expect. I think this was the attraction for this movie as it created a new style of film which was a light-hearted sci-fi comedy that suggests the possibility of a living robot who gains a spark of humanity. If have you seen this movie, you will know that it is a very touching and uplifting story and while the concept has been replicated with many following films. I think SHORT CIRCUIT still stands out the crowd as one of the best and nostalgic films of this genre.

Star rating: (10/10) Best Movie Ever

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