I Robot: Product Placement

| Tags: movie

Yesterday I got carried away with talking about the dream and fear of robots. I actually forgot to talk about the thing because of which I started writing the blog entry. I will make up for that now.

The thing that really annoyed me about “I, Robot” was the very unsubtle product placements. Ok there is nothing to say against product placement. It adds some more money in the wallets of the movie makers and is generally harmless. Product placement that is done well, is very subtle. At its best you don’t recognize it. You simply go to the next shop the next day and simply buy the product you saw in the movie ;) . In this movie the product placements are plainly visible. First Will Smith hears loud music that comes out from an - as to the time the movie plays in - outdated JVC HIFI system. Then he unwraps his new Converse shoes and tells us how those shoes from 2004 are the best. Hey (This Hey is officially dedicated to Kai Rüstmann :) ), I had my load of ads before the movie. I go to the cinema to watch a movie without pauses for ads. I even paid for watching this. That was really annoying. I sure won’t buy any Converse shoes in the next several years or so, no matter how good they really are. After this Converse ad and some actual movie content, Will Smith gets into his Audi. We won’t see this model very soon on the market. It can drive alone in its autopilot mode or can be driven manually by those who are wary of self driving cars. This all you see in the first 10 minutes. The products and the logos of the companies are re-shown several times through the movie.

But the most astonishing appearance concerning product placement is “U.S. Robotics”. I wondered if “U.S. Robotics” actually paid for this. Apparently they must have. On their sites ( http://www.usr.com/ ) ) they have links to some “I, Robot” competitions. I don’t think this was a wise move. In the movie USR is the center of the evil. It’s the company which developed the computer that wants to enslave the humans. Will this movie motivate you to buy a router by USR? Maybe the router has an uplink to USR and will do some weird stuff with your personal data as soon as it gets the special order. Watch the red light :) . Maybe it’s because USR isn’t top notch anymore - if it ever was. So attracting attention is all, even if it makes them shine in a bad light.