Short Circuit is directed by John Badham and written by S.S. Wilson and Brent Maddock. It stars Ally Sheedy, Steve Guttenberg, Fisher Stevens, Austin Pendleton, G.W. Bailey and Brian MacNamara. Tim Blaney voices the robot, and the design is by Syd Mead.
Number 5, a prototype military robot, is hit by a power surge that causes a malfunction in its programming. When an accident sees it leave the Nova Laboratories grounds, Number 5 finds his way to the home of Stephanie Speck (Sheedy). Here it displays signs of being alive, but the new found respect for life could soon be curtailed as the Nova security staff are seeking him out for disassembly.
On release it was met with mostly positive reviews, debuting at No.1 at the box office, film was undoubtedly a family winner. Also spawning a sequel due to its popularity, Short Circuit is by definition an enjoyable fantasy flick. Yet today there are film critics who give it a good kicking, lamenting how safe it is and decrying the sentimental aspects that come to the fore in the latter stages. That to me is like shooting Bambi! A refusal to let the child in all of us come out once in a while. Yeah it's schmaltzy at times, I'd personally be disappointed if a film about a robot finding a will to live wasn't! While in Sheedy and Guttenberg you couldn't ask for two more amiable bastions of Americana to star in such a movie. But the feel good factor is high and it's also full of funny sequences. Saturday Night Fever and The Three Stooges play a part, as does Fisher Stevens, who sends the PC brigade scurrying for their complaint pens. Lighten up folks, the World has moved on you'll be pleased to know.
Sometimes safe and amiable is all you need. I suggest it's all these grumpy modern day critics who need a good kicking, not Short Circuit. 7/10