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"...I'd take a chance on Greg Pak's micro-budget indie Robot Stories, a valentine from the future. Broken into a quartet of subtle science-fiction fables, each is more Ray Bradbury than Keanu Reeves -- and romantic in its own strange way: A sculptor becomes obsessed with the digitized memories of his wife; a worried couple tries to love an android baby; a mother reconstructs her dying son's vintage robot-toy collection; and an android office-drone (played by Pak) falls in love. Somehow the cast (largely composed of underutilized Asian-American actors like Tamlyn Tomita) underplays the gizmos and hits the emotional beats dead-on, heating up a genre that so often looks stylish, but feels dead-cold."
"Pak sets himself up as a filmmaker to watch, a creator of intelligent, thoughtful stories that refuse to be contained by traditional definition. Which is exactly what we need in our movies."
"Robot Stories is a rare breed of anthology that managed to combine the ideas of science fiction, the down to earth nature of the indie film, and more humanity than most of what you’ll find on shelves today."
"[The film's] four loosely interwoven stories about robots, parents, children and toxic workplaces contain enough intriguing notions about artificial intelligence and human relationships to fuel at least an hour's worth of happy post-movie geeking out."
"... these four segments cumulatively offer something much more satisfying than most sci-fi blockbusters. George Lucas could learn something from Pak and his predominantly Asian-American cast about creating credible characters."
"Written and directed by talented novice Greg Pak, Robot Stories is composed of four separate, exemplary tales about the nebulous boundary between man and machine. An independent production devoid of expensive, and unnecessary, special effects, it offers crisp glimpses into a near future in which the intelligence is artificial but the emotion is real."
"Director Greg Pak's 'Robot Stories' is the most entertainingly humanistic robot film since 'Metropolis,' and anyone who tells you otherwise is probably a replicant and not to be trusted around small animals and electrical outlets."
"One of the most human and humane science fiction films I've seen in a long time."
"A smart, low budget meditation (or meditations) on love, loss, family, and community, writer director Greg Pak's anthology borrows elements from Ray Bradbury, Phillip K. Dick, and other sci-fi visionaries, but places them in a recognizable, down-to-earth context... 'Robot Stories' isn't slick, isn't gimmicky. These are tales from the heart - pulsing to a high-tech beat."
"By turns funny, melancholy and incredibly moving."
"It will be interesting to see what [director Greg] Pak can do with a film that gets a little more funding and wider release. Then again, a big studio and a big budget wouldn't have improved 'Robot Stories.' It's fairly close to perfect already.'"
"Built around the themes of love, death, family, and of course robots, Korean director Greg Pak's 'Robot Stories' beautifully styles four tales. Through narratives both hilarious and touching, humans are forced to interact with robots in a way that eerily reflects the growing influence technology has on our lives... Each story is stunningly executed and moving in its own right."
"Forget 'Hellboy.' 'Robot Stories' is the real deal -- a science-fiction with a brain and a heart."
"Quiet subtlety abounds throughout these terrific shorts... For fans of independent films, or people that just like good movies, Robot Stories is a must-see."
"Each of the stories, impeccably staged and acted, has just the right length... Never allowing preciousness or ponderousness to infuse the material, filmmaker Pak demonstrates a real talent for concise storytelling marked by poignancy and humor."
"... this is a heartfelt endeavor, given weight by [Sab] Shimono's extraordinary performance, in which the actor uses the subtlest flicks of his weary brow to call forth torrents of sorrow and minefields of regret."
"A new candidate for the Robotic Hall of Fame."
"Director-writer Greg Pak's quartet of short films about the intersection of mechanized men with human nature is sensitively directed, beautifully acted and - unusual for most science-fiction movies - gracefully rendered."
"Each fable concludes with a lovely, enduring final image that resonates like the last sentence of a powerful short story."
"Ostensibly about artificial life forms, each of these four short, expertly crafted stories offers a poignant perspective on what it means to be human... Following in the footsteps of Ray Bradbury, Rod Serling and Philip K. Dick rather than George Lucas, Pak returns to the tradition of intelligent, humanistic sci-fi and reminds us of the value of good genre fiction."
"Mr. Pak's stylized stoicism is discernible in 'Machine Love,' the segment in which he can be seen as Archie, an android office worker who gamely endures the ridicule of the other drones around him because of his single-mindedness. With a clever economy of means, 'Machine Love' conveys the blooming of feelings inside the android, who is slowly developing an attachment to a woman who works nearby. The director is using the material to joke about the coldness of humanity and the intimidating power of loneliness."
"The title of Greg Pak's "Robot Stories" is a little misleading. This superb four-part anthology features one robot, two androids, a slew of microbot toys, a full-figured lady hologram and several very interesting humans."
"For all the melodrama lurking at the edges of Robot Stories, Pak never resorts to preachiness or pathos. He's an uncannily assured visual storyteller, and his crew - particularly cinematographer Peter Olsen and editor Stephanie Sterner - matches his creative fervor. The result is a quietly impassioned, genuinely stirring indie rarity. As a character in 'The Robot Fixer' puts it, 'A little care goes a long way.'"
"'Machine Love' is about mankind’s repulsive yet apparently timeless desire to hold other creatures as slaves. The sight of Archie standing upright and shirtless against a picture window at night–filled with longing, yet powerless to do anything to halt the evil occurring next door - is one of the most disturbing images in modern sci-fi cinema."
"Movies often use fanciful technology as a mere source of plot twists, but Robot Stories's final chapter reminds us that such devices are a lot more effective when used to explore the human heart."
"Greg Pak’s lovely, low-key science-fiction film has more in common with the short stories of Ray Bradbury than the pyrotechnics of George Lucas. Composed as a quartet of expertly acted chapters, the film’s a smart evocation of love in the near-future, told through a widower’s grief, a mother’s anxiety, a family’s tragedy, and a robot’s confusion."
"In less than 90 minutes, "Robot Stories" says more about humanity's relationship to machines than the entire "Matrix" trilogy. At its best, this quartet of vignettes could also be favorably compared to "Minority Report" (without the budget) and "A.I." (without the bluster)."
"If this well-done collection of four shorts was on paper instead of film, you'd find it in the pages of The New Yorker or Atlantic Monthly. Writer-director Greg Pak focuses on our contemporary computerized lives -- occasionally delving into the future -- in a weighty and relevant anthology."
"If only Steven Spielberg had had the quirkiness and the funny bone of New York filmmaker Greg Pak when he set out to make A.I.: Artificial Intelligence a couple of years ago. We might all have been the richer for it."
"Don’t be fooled by the title - 'Robot Stories' isn't just for science-fiction fans. Each of the four segments that makes up the film tells a heartbreaking story that has as much to do with human interactions as it has to do with robots... Even the most tragic circumstances, however, are juxtaposed in the film with moments of pure, innocent joy."
"The stories span the life cycle from birth to death and take you on an emotional roller-coaster ride from hilarious highs to emotion-grabbing moments that will have you reaching for your hankie."
"One of the most moving pieces I've seen all year."
- Jean Oppenheimer, FilmWeek, 89.3 KPCC LA
"'Pak loves the high concept, but keeps it simple; we're sucked in not by the conceit, the gimmick, but the emotion behind each tale, and it's a remarkable bit of work."
- Robert Wilonsky, Dallas Observer
"'Robot Stories' is an exquisitely moving and original examination of the humanity of machines and the artificiality of humans, directed with grace and humor by Pak."
- Natalie Kim Burns, FunFactor
"This is postmodern anthropology, a strange and bittersweet little movie that knows its sci-fi ancestry but dares to take it into new and personal directions. You'll want to follow along."
- Steve Schneider, Orlando Weekly
"'The Robot Fixer' is truly transcendent. A mother, visiting her comatose son's apartment, uncovers a cache of his old toys, a huge but crumbling collection of robot action figures. She becomes obsessed with restoring them, convinced that in doing so, she can somehow repair her damaged son. A poignant tale of love and loss.
- Pam Grady, Contra Costa Times
"One of the better screenplays of independent film in 2002."
- Chris Wehner, Screenwriters Utopia
"A technological treasure - the kind of science fiction that sophisticated audiences crave and deserve."
- Jonathan Hickman, Entertainment Insiders
"Strong thesping by a largely Asian American cast and clever sci-fi concepts... Helmer Greg Pak understands the short form well, mercifully avoiding blatant O. Henry twists while pulling off neat reversals of expertly set-up genre expectations."
- Ronnie Scheib, Variety
"'My Robot Baby,' which stars Tamlyn Tomita as the ambivalent mother to a ridiculously ovoid mechanical infant, gets the feeling of new motherhood exactly right. Its corollary, 'The Robot Fixer,' features a pitch-perfect, beautifully understated performance by Wai Ching Ho as a mother determined to complete her comatose son's collection of toy robots."
- Marritt Ingman, Austin Chronicle
"Creepy and intriguing."
- San Francisco Examiner
"Pak deftly balances thought-provoking sci-fi story-lines with palpable human drama."
- Brita Brundage, Fairfield County Weekly
"Pak's digital feature is infused with clever and perceptive interpretations of character motivation and fresh perspectives on the role of technology in everyday life."
- Justin Lowe, AsianWeek
"'Robot Stories' explores people's humanity by setting it agains a mechanical backdrop, without once resorting to cliche... In the mad rush of Hawaii International Film Festival movies this season, 'Robot Stories' is one film that should not be left behind.'"
- Robb Bonnell, Honolulu Weekly
"Funny, clever and emotionally visceral... Artfully realized, 'Robot Stories' pulsates with humanity."
- Hersch Doby, Hamptons Int'l Film Festival
"This is a moving, thoughtful film with good performances by actors Sab Shimono and Tamlyn Tomita which deserves theatrical distribution and/or broadcast on cable or PBS."
- Albert Lanier, Honolulu News
"An exhilarating ride by a masterful filmmaker, four utterly engrossing tales which speak with the wisdom of parables to our technologically-obsessed age. Greg Pak infuses each moment of this beautiful film with an infectious wonder at the joys and complexities of existence."
- David Henry Hwang ("M. Butterfly," "Flower Drum Song")
"By turns quirky, thoughtful, and laugh-out-loud funny, Greg Pak's feature film debut is an off-kilter look at a world in which machines think and feel, and humans often don't. In short, 'Robot Stories' is Steven Spielberg's 'A.I.' done right."
- Jeff Yang, founder, aMagazine: Inside Asian America
San Diego Asian Film Festival interview with "Robot Stories" director Greg Pak
eInsiders mention of "Robot Stories" in coverage of the Slamdance Film Festival
FunFactor interview with "Robot Stories" director Greg Pak
Entertainment Insiders interview with "Robot Stories" director Greg Pak
Bookmouth.com interview with "Robot Stories" director Greg Pak
FilmHelp.com article about the "Robot Stories" shooting strategy and tape-to-film transfer