HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Blogs
Blog

15 Great Robots of 1980s Film & TV

View Comments: Threaded|Newest First|Oldest First
Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
"I'll be back"
Charles Murray   7/25/2014 4:58:32 PM
NO RATINGS
For my money, Arnold was the best movie robot ever. His acting was just stiff enough to fit the role, and the Austrian accent added a menacing quality to his words. His line, "I'll be back," is remembered for good reason. With Arnold's delivery, it's still one of the most chillingly funny lines in movie history.

Nancy Golden
User Rank
Platinum
Re: "I'll be back"
Nancy Golden   7/25/2014 5:11:02 PM
NO RATINGS
I agree Charles - and we are still having fun with Arnold and his famous line today - check out this clip

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Re: "I'll be back"
Charles Murray   7/28/2014 4:40:59 PM
NO RATINGS
Great clips, Nancy. Thanks. It's amazing how that line has lived on -- it's now 30 years old.

Cabe Atwell
User Rank
Blogger
Re: "I'll be back"
Cabe Atwell   7/29/2014 2:19:52 AM
NO RATINGS
1980s robots are the absolute best. Terminator, Transformers, Johnny 5, Batteries not Included... Greatest of all time!

Batteries not Included inspired me to become an engineer!

Cabe

AnandY
User Rank
Gold
Re: "I'll be back"
AnandY   7/30/2014 6:18:43 AM
NO RATINGS
@Cabe Atwell: Robots in newer films have too much CGI going on, wouldn?t you agree? I mean it?s hard to focus on any one part of Optimus Prime because he has got so many complicated movable parts that draw our attention. The newer robot films pay attention to the robot CGI and not the story. I loved Wall.E very much. I think that was the most movable animated movie in recent times besides Up!

Nancy Golden
User Rank
Platinum
Family Movies
Nancy Golden   7/25/2014 5:13:01 PM
NO RATINGS
I love Flight of the Navigator - now that was a robot with personality! Short Circuit was good too - both are great family movies.

Daniyal_Ali
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Family Movies
Daniyal_Ali   7/26/2014 1:51:20 AM
NO RATINGS
Wall-E always reminds me of Short Circuit, the resemblance is uncanny.

The animation of Wall-E is obviously too good as the technology grew, but the initial credit goes to Short Circuit for coming up with such a cute robot. No matter what people say i will always see Wall-E as the little brother of J5.

far911
User Rank
Silver
Re: Family Movies
far911   7/26/2014 2:07:04 PM
NO RATINGS
Short circuit had a really nice plot according to 80 s movies and the concept was really nice.

tekochip
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Family Movies
tekochip   7/27/2014 2:50:05 PM
NO RATINGS
Nice job again, I completely forgot about "Batteries Not Included".

Daniyal_Ali
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Family Movies
Daniyal_Ali   7/28/2014 2:27:08 AM
NO RATINGS
Yes the list gets better after each decade, which shows the advancement in the film industry as well as animation. The upcoming lists would be much more interesting as the Robot movies are a lot in number, and i am eager to see which ones make it to the top 15 slots.

Pubudu
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Family Movies
Pubudu   7/28/2014 12:45:49 PM
NO RATINGS
Yes far911 those conceptualizations are valid for these days also specially Robocop and the terminators are still in the market. 

PizzaEater
User Rank
Silver
Re: Family Movies
PizzaEater   8/4/2014 1:22:51 PM
NO RATINGS
My wife remembered Short Circuit as a nice family film too, and started watching it with our then 5 year old.  There are a lot of words (and a jester or two) in this movie you don't want a youngster repeating.  My wife asked if I could remove these sections of the film, so I made a clean version.  It was quite popular with our friends that had similarly aged children.

Daniyal_Ali
User Rank
Platinum
Robot Jox and Saturn 3
Daniyal_Ali   7/26/2014 1:25:48 AM
NO RATINGS
I think you missed these two. They are not necessarily among the best of the robotic movies of the 1980s but the Robots were still pretty good considering the 80s. Perhaps they didn't make the top 15 of your list. For me, Arnold takes the cup for the 1980s robots.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Robot Jox and Saturn 3
Rob Spiegel   7/28/2014 10:11:34 AM
NO RATINGS
Yes, Daniyal_Ali, I sweated over which robot movies to include, and Robot Jox and Saturn 3 didn't make the cut. 

Pubudu
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Robot Jox and Saturn 3
Pubudu   7/28/2014 12:56:31 PM
NO RATINGS
Rob, Did we miss the "Star Trek" in the list?

far911
User Rank
Silver
Re: Robot Jox and Saturn 3
far911   7/28/2014 1:07:25 PM
NO RATINGS
Ya true Star Trek s spark initially.

far911
User Rank
Silver
Re: Robot Jox and Saturn 3
far911   7/28/2014 1:13:50 PM
NO RATINGS
DATA from Star Trek : The Next Generation

far911
User Rank
Silver
Re: Robot Jox and Saturn 3
far911   7/28/2014 1:15:20 PM
NO RATINGS
DATA from the Star Trek: The Next Generation

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Robot Jox and Saturn 3
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   8/20/2014 4:12:02 PM
NO RATINGS
Did we cover the saga of Steve Austin & Oscar Goldman-?  Was that covered in the 70's Story-?  I can't recall ,,,,,,

Battar
User Rank
Platinum
Not all robots
Battar   7/28/2014 9:05:22 AM
NO RATINGS
Not all of them are robots. Some are Androids. Not the same thing (robot is a humanoid machine, android is a synthetic human).

 

ramjet@metrocast.net
User Rank
Gold
Re: Not all robots
ramjet@metrocast.net   7/28/2014 9:30:46 AM
NO RATINGS
I'd agree on Saturn 2. Then again, not sure if it just didn't make the top list.

Robot Jox are not robots, they are massive powered exoskeltons.

Same for the Powered Lifter Ripley used in Alien. not a Robot.

 

Not gonna worry about the line between andriod/artificial lifeform and robot.

They were made.

 

Zippy
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Not all robots
Zippy   8/11/2014 4:12:05 PM
NO RATINGS
Batar, not to painfully extend the discussion of terminology, but as I understand it:

Robot - mechanical/electrical (non-living, anyway) autonomous or semi-autonomous device

Android - robot with human form

Cyborg - combination living and non-living functional parts

 

"Robots" is used here for some things that meet the strict robot criteria (Short Circuit, Wall-E), androids (Data from Star Trek), and cyborgs (Robocop).  Some things discussed here, like the replicants in "Blade Runner" aren't any of these things, as they are genetically modified humans with nothing robotic.  Arnold's Terminator is called a cyborg, His skin was non-functional (don't know if it was supposed to be alive or not) and therefore he might actually be an android.  Terminator 2 was clearly not a cyborg, but since it used some liquid metal technology beyond description which could make it appear human (in which case it would be an android) or non-human (in which case it is a robot), I don't know what to call it.  I'm so confused...   :)

rpoffen
User Rank
Iron
There was "Jinx" in Space Camp
rpoffen   7/28/2014 9:29:30 AM
NO RATINGS
This movie starred Kate Capshaw.

It was released about 5 months after the space shuttle Challenger disaster

rpoffen
User Rank
Iron
There was "Jinx" in Space Camp
rpoffen   7/28/2014 9:29:46 AM
NO RATINGS
This movie starred Kate Capshaw.

It was released in 1986, about 5 months after the space shuttle Challenger disaster

John
User Rank
Gold
Chip
John   7/28/2014 2:18:39 PM
NO RATINGS
Nobody saw the Disney Channels' Chip Carson in Not quite human?  I think he has a full length movie even.

TagFerret
User Rank
Iron
Often overlooked
TagFerret   7/29/2014 1:42:04 PM
NO RATINGS
So perhaps not as "memorable" as the rest for most people, and none of the robots were the star of the film, but for me you just can't overlook the robots in 1984's "The Ice Pirates" starring Robert Ulrich!

The film includes dozens of robots, all of which are wonderfully silly machines.  On the protagonists' ship you have sword-weilding Rock-Em-Sock-Em combat robots and the Kung Fu Master robot created by Roscoe (Michael D. Roberts) -- "So why did you make it black?" "Because I wanted it to be perfect!" --  and and the ship's self-propelled trash can robot.  On the villainous Templar (yes you read that right) vessels you have the counterparts to the swordfighting robots.  And in between you ancounter a delightful Pimp Bot and family of mommy, daddy, and baby bots at the spaceport... plus many others!

 

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Rocky IV
Charles Murray   7/29/2014 8:27:12 PM
NO RATINGS
Possibly the worst movie robot was Sico from Rocky IV. It's everything we've come to expect from Hollywood's least imaginative movies. Reminds me of the robot in the TV show, Lost in Sapce.

AnandY
User Rank
Gold
Terminator
AnandY   7/30/2014 6:18:05 AM
NO RATINGS
I loved the old Terminator films and have come to appreciate the newer ones, and I think such robotic nuisance is increasingly possible in this age of advanced computers. I personally liked the Terminator (the ones played by Arnold) because it was old, yet robust, and it learned real quickly.

Corona Rich
User Rank
Gold
Best Robots of the 80's ever.
Corona Rich   8/1/2014 9:53:17 AM

Good list!  But if you ask us, you missed a few...

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Best Robots of the 80's ever.
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   8/20/2014 4:08:53 PM
NO RATINGS
You gotta jog my memory - was that Mystery Science Theatre 3000-?

Partner Zone
More Blogs
With Radio Shack on the ropes, let's take a memory trip through the highlights of Radio Shack products.
Computer security firm Norton has partnered with clothing company Betaband on a pair of jeans that will keep your RFID-tagged credit cards and documents safe from wireless theft.
As U.S. manufacturing booms, companies are beginning to invest in new equipment.
New research from the Georgia Center for Innovations for Manufacturing shows manufacturing will boom in 2015 as reshoring continues to bring production back to the U.S.>
UBM Canon, the world’s leading advanced design and manufacturing industry resource, and Design News, are pleased to announce the finalists in the 2015 Golden Mousetrap Awards, a program that celebrates the companies, products, and people who are energizing North American design, engineering, and manufacturing.
Design News Webinar Series
12/11/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
12/10/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
11/19/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
11/6/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Dec 15 - 19, An Introduction to Web Application Security
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  67


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service