(2009) ★★

BBC1: Friday 18 September, 11.35pm

Wired up humans rely on remote-controlled cyborgs to handle tasks in the real world. “Life… only better,” boast the Virtual Self billboards. When the owner-operators of these ‘surrogates’ start dying, Boston PD detectives Bruce Willis and Radha Mitchell investigate. Well, their showroom dummy avatars do.

The future’s always a confusing place, isn’t it? But this highly derivative We, Robots riff, culled from a comic book and flashily filmed in deliberately cartoony fashion like an outmoded MTV video, really should have had its plug pulled. The only ones making any sense are 21st century schizoid man James Cromwell (who was also a brilliant cyberneticist in I, Robot) and crackpot prophet Ving Rhames, raging against the machines.

The robots must be winning, because they appear to have had more than one rusty hand in the making of this automated movie, which is at least brisk and slick as neon-lit city streets on a rainy night. Too sleazy for its 12 rating, not quite sleazy enough to be really interesting. The only thing missing in the end is a Radiohead song. We get Breaking Benjamin instead. Their lousy generic rock ballad I Will Not Bow is all over the closing credits.

Certificate: 12

Duration: 85min

IMDB – Surrogates

TMDB – Surrogates

Rotten Tomatoes – Surrogates

Other Showings Time & Date
BBC1 Northern Ireland Saturday, 19 September at 12:35AM