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VWN Product Reviews: The Positronic Man

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Based heavily on Issac Asimov's novella 'The Bicentennial Man', this collaboration between Issac Asimov and Robert Silverberg essentially takes the original novella, and expands it, filling in the detail and depth of plot to create a full-fledged novel. Produced six years before the film, this set the groundwork for that work, adding in the myriad of little details that truly brought the world to life.

Written in 1993, it substantially updates the core concepts of the original 1976 novel, whilst remaining true to the spirit.

The novel chronicles the quest of the robot Andrew, initially property of the Martin family, to achieve the rights, privileges, appearance and ultimately even the weaknesses of being fully human. When brought to the home of wealthy politician Gerald Martin, Andrew is little more than a standard household robot, but he quickly develops a remarkable, even artistic, skill in woodworking. He proceeds to stretch his increasingly human-like mind, seeking and winning his freedom and legal rights, grieving as human friends die and he lives on, replacing his robotic parts with organic prostheses of his own design.

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The Bicentennial Man

Issac Asimov's novella 'The Bicentennial Man' was originally penned in 1976. It is a novella length story, looking at the life of a robot servant who more than anything else, wants to be recognised as equal to a human, with all the rights and responsibilities thus.



Bicentennial Man

The second major adaptation of Issac Asimov's novella 'The Bicentennial Man', this film has some humourous moments and genuine warmth, but it is underlined by the struggle for equality, by a sentient, yet non-human mind. This film, like both books before it, is a poster-child for robot rights.

 

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