Irish Film Institute -ROBOT & FRANK



89 minutes, U.S.A. 2012, Colour, D-Cinema

It’s such a treat to discover an unexpected little gem like this disarming take on the traditional odd-couple comedy. In the not-too-distant future, Frank Langella is a retired cat burglar living out his days in leafy upstate New York, but his family are only too aware that his mind is losing its grip. Enter the latest in automated healthcare support, a pristine, smooth-talking android to make sure Frank takes his medicine, eats his greens, and gets his exercise. Needless to say, the old man is resolutely unimpressed, since so-called progress has also just emptied the local library of all the books on the shelves. However, when he realises that ‘Robot’ can also be trained to assist him in a bit of thievery, his opinion starts to change.

A wry character study and sly commentary on our interaction with technology, this is an absolute charmer, showcasing a memorable turn from old-stager Langella, who delivers plenty of inner twinkle behind his gruff exterior. (Notes by Trevor Johnston.)

This film will also be discussed in The Critical Take, the IFI’s FREE monthly film club, on March 27th (18.30). Want to join the debate? Simply book your FREE seat by contacting the IFI Box Office on 01 679 3477 or emailing (given that events can sell out, please note that your emailed booking requests must be confirmed by reply email from the Box Office in order to be considered valid).  

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