Soviet Movie Café: His Name Was Robert or We called Him Robert

“His Name Was Robert” (1967) is another wonderful Soviet sci-fi movie. It tells about a humanoid-robot created in a laboratory and raises important issues of AI’s place & role in the Soviet human society.

The story so far: “The Scientist Sergej Sergeevich creates a human robot designed as his twin as an experiment. He calls him Robert. The AI copy is successful, it possesses superior qualities & perfect intellect. To test it among people he sends his robot-twin to a date with his bride Tatiana. All of sudden Robert falls in love with her & is ready to fulfill any her caprice even a dangerous one, because, being a machine, he comprehends everything literally. His affection makes him out of control. It created confusion & shock among the scientists. Robert desires nothing but to stay near the object of his passion. His feelings are so true, pure & sincere. However, Tatiana is indifferent to AI’s love. To the middle of the story she reveals herself as a selfish, plain personality & the contrast between a sophisticated vision of love & her primitive materialistic one become obvious. The dramatic culmination is approaching. She begins giving Robert too many tasks he is unable to complete. They cause constant breaking in his mechanism. The story ends with Robert’s death caused by Tatiana’s caprice. Nobody regrets about him. The scientists make cold conclusions that the AI using means a lot of problems & unpredictable situations, so they begin prepare a human being for the first space flight”.

I’m fond of this movie because it is very human. It shows negative sides of our progressive human society & proves again how it is difficult for a pure soul (even made as a mechanism) to survive in this cruel environment. At present it raises important question:  if AI enter into our life, who will be more human: they or we?

I have not found the complete movie on Youtube, however it exists in some streaming channels. For boldest Readers who are not afraid of the Russian language, I leave the link to the original version. The movie is rather simple, so I think it is a pleasure to be watched even as it is: Его Звали Роберт (1967).

Maria KethuProfumo

About kethuprofumo

Reconstructing the Past for the glorious Future
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17 Responses to Soviet Movie Café: His Name Was Robert or We called Him Robert

  1. Sounds like a great movie. I’m surprised it was made so long ago. Poor Robert.

  2. Lovely review. I had never heard about that film : thank you for sharing

  3. This is an interesting premise, Maria. I’ve not watched a movie quite like this.

  4. Let's Cook says:

    Lovely Review.
    Hi dear would be glad if you follow my blog. Would love to have you as friend

  5. There was a tv show last year called Humans about robots in work in people’s homes cooking, caring for children and the elderly and how they wanted to be treated more as human. I only managed to watch a couple but it was interested and a glimpse into what scientists are planning for future care. This film looks like an interesting look into what a past vision was.

    • kethuprofumo says:

      What an interesting parallel, dear Charlotte! Thank you! It must be the Japanese programme, as robots are popular there. What do you think about entrance of AI into our society?

      • Good question. I am concerned about what all the humans will do and have watched far to many sci-fi films to be completely cool about it. But AI to help people in wheelchairs to walk again or feed themselves and AI used to advance medical operations are amazing. AI baristas and film stars hmmmm.

  6. It sound interesting! Is It based on a book?

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