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YMMV / Robots

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  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Was Tim always a Jerkass Nice Character, Mean Actor, or was he originally a decent and friendly guy who Took a Level in Jerkass after working under the corrupt and uncaring Ratchet for a long time?
    • Ratchet — is he a purely evil character who genuinely wants to wipe out Bigweld and all of the outmodes? Or is he just hiding a simple wish for the richer and shinier robots to get an equal amount of attention behind the ambition of his mother, thus making him Not Evil, Just Misunderstood?
      • According to the "Meet the Bots" special feature on the DVD, Greg Kinnear seems to view him as closer to the latter.
      Greg Kinnear: I think Ratchet's misunderstood. Evil? No. Some would say. He's sorta the head of a global corporation and the #2 guy next in line. He's a bit ambitious and, uh, yes, it's true he'd do anything to get what he wants or needs—including basically disembowel the robots. But he's still a decent guy if you really get to know him.
  • Awesome Music:
    • Tom Waits' "Underground" for when we first see the Chop Shop, which sadly wasn't included on the soundtrack album.
    • Herb Copperbottom's robotic rendition of "Get Up Offa That Thing". Especially the part where Diesel is given - by Bigweld himself - a custom part that gives him James Brown's voice.
    • John Powell's percussion-and-brass-heavy score (accompanied by none other than Blue Man Group).
    • "Shine" by Ricky Fanté is an uplifting and catchy song that inspires you to be the very best that you can be, no matter what the rest of the world says. Extremely fitting for the main message that Robots is sending across.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: Domino surfing! Though it did allow Bigweld to make an entrance worthy of Willy Wonka himself.
  • Cliché Storm: One of the main criticisms from the movie's detractors.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: A character in an animated kids' movie farting is one thing. A character in an animated kids' movie making a fart so bad it kills someone (complete with a Chalk Outline on the sidewalk the next morning) is on another level entirely.
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  • Cult Classic: In wake of their closure, this was Blue Sky's only film not to be part of a franchise or an adaptation, and tends to get swept under the rug, but it has a strong enough audience of nostalgic fans who keep its memory alive.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Loretta Geargrinder. Despite being a very minor character, she does have a bit of a following among the fanbase, even being included as a key supporting character in some fanfics.
    • Tim, the puppet-like robot at the gate of Bigweld Industries. He doesn't have much screentime, but he wastes no time showing how much of an unapologetic and hilarious asshole he is.
  • Fan Fic Fuel: Who built the robots? Unlike Cars, where the world-building is quite unfinished, Robots has clear rules about how a robot is "born" and the cities are clearly built by them. Is it an After the End scenario or merely an Alternate Universe? And in both cases, who was the first robot?
  • Fanon: Some people believe that Fender is trans or has an Ambiguous Gender Identity, since he doesn't seem to mind dressing up as a woman.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: That one scene where Fender's arms fall off becomes less funny when 9 years after the movie was released, Robin Williams, who voiced Fender, committed suicide by slitting his wrists.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Although the film ended up being a somewhat modest box office success, grossing just $128,200,012 domestically, there were some countries that received it enthusiastically:
    • It was quite popular in Mexico, particularly because of the inclusion of singer Aleks Syntek voicing Rodney in the Latin Spanish dub. Furthermore, Syntek's song "Un Heroe Real" was featured in the end credits for that dub and ended up winning the film an MTV Movie Award for Best Song.
    • The film's Swedish dub had many big names from that country voicing some of the characters - the Wahlgren brothers Linus and Niclas as Rodney and Ratchet respectively, comedian Robert Gustafsson as Fender, singer Anna Sahlin as Cappy, A-Teens member Marie Serneholt as Piper and 60's singer Svante Thuresson as Bigweld to name a few. The movie ranked No. 1 at the Swedish box office when it was released there, overtaking Hitch and beating the simultaneous opening of The Ring Two, and stayed on top for two weeks until being taken down by Miss Congienality 2: Armed And Fabulous.
    • In New Zealand, the film topped the box office for three weeks, beating Miss Congeniality 2 on its opening weekend there, and barely missed the top 10 highest-grossing films of the year there by the time it had finished its run there.
    • While the film was only a mild success in Germany, singer Sarah Connor, who voiced Cappy in the German dub, released a music video called From Zero to Hero, which uses footage from the film, to coincide with its release there. The song also features during the closing credits in the German dub.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • Jerks Are Worse Than Villains: Ratchet and Madame Gasket are the villains of the film, but both of them are compelling and entertaining to watch because they both have plenty of funny moments (especially Ratchet, who frequently Screams Like a Little Girl and veers into Ambiguously Gay territory), and their mother-and-son relationship is actually slightly heartwarming sometimes. Mr. Gunk and Tim, on the other hand, are not evil, but both are obnoxious Hate Sinks. Mr. Gunk is a grumpy Mean Boss to Herb and Rodney, as demonstrated in the scene where Wonderbot inadvertently wrecks the kitchen. The incident only happened because Mr. Gunk shouted at them upon entering the room, and Wonderbot, being easily startled, got a bad fright from it (effectively making it Mr. Gunk's fault in more ways than one). And then, when Rodney tries to explain that all had been going well beforehand and prevent his father from taking all of the blame, Mr. Gunk fires him and scoffs at his dream of becoming an inventor. Tim is a particularly notorious showcase of this trope, too; the scene of him slamming the front gate to Bigweld Industries in Rodney's face says it all, and so does the scene afterwards of him taking delight in Rodney's misfortune after the latter becomes magnetized. Thankfully, both of them get hit by karma at the end — Mr. Gunk gets Herb's dishwasher dunked on his head, and Tim gets kicked out of the Rivet Town dance party by Wonderbot as payback for his mean treatment of Rodney.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "Upgrades, people! Upgrades!" People love to quote that line whenever there is some kind of Serial Escalation involved. Especially the darkly hilarious type.
    • Bigweld himself recently has become popular with being portrayed as an invincible god-like entity or anime character who can rival or is even seen as more powerful than Shaggy.
    • "Gimme those big anime eyes."
    • This clip and variations of it have become popular in early 2021.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Diesel with his Darth Vader voice box.
  • Signature Scene: The marble train scene is extremely well-remembered, for perfectly illustrating the movie's Crazy Awesome, yet very inventive nature.
    • The domino scene for the same reason, showing impossible complex set-ups all culminating in Bigweld's Crazy Awesome entrance.
  • Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped: The movie extolled the virtue of innovation and desire to improve people's livelihood, which the film showed Big Weld's prosperous society that he made for the city in contrast to self-interest driven ideals of Phineas T. Ratchet that ostracize less-modern "Outmode" robots into lower classes to be processed into upgrades for wealthier robots. Also it showed the eventual result of repression against lower classes as represented by a massive revolt by the "Outmode" robots after a long time of being left to be broken by Ratchet's policy against them.
  • Spiritual Adaptation: This is arguably the closest there is to a movie adaptation of Scrapland, which came out a year prior to this movie.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Lug and Diesel, the respective green and blue robots of the Rusties, don't get much in the way of development compared to the other characters. While Diesel's character mainly consists of the occasional Pantomime joke, Lug's character is reduced to a few lines throughout the whole movie, though a deleted scene implies that they originally planned for him to have somewhat of a short temper. As such, some people wish these two were fleshed out a bit more, especially with their status of being best friends being hinted at.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: Considering the amount of detail and texture put into the robots and the metal environment they live in, this is easily one of Blue Sky's best-looking films, and the animation has aged surprisingly very well since 2005.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: Not as bad as most animated films of the time, but the movie has some surprisingly raunchy humor in the form of innuendos.


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