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I found Robot & Frank while listening to the Science Sort Of… Podcast this week. For those who haven’t heard a Science Sort of… Podcast, each episode features a piece they call “Trailer Trash Talk” where the hosts watch a movie a trailer and then determine whether they should give it a thumbs up and invest in it or thumbs down and avoid it. The investment they would be making would be in the fictional by reactive Hollywood Stock Exchange that is like the regular stock exchange, but instead of the market revolving around the performance of major corporations, it revolved around the performance of movies at the box office.

The Science Sort Of… team recently reviewed the trailer for Robot & Frank and their enthusiasm for the unorthodox, kind-of-indie flick had me looking it up as soon as I got home… Well worth it! The movie opens in August, but I recommend checking it out now. Here’s the trailer with another entertaining scene and the movie’s synopsis at the bottom:


Set in the near future, ROBOT & FRANK is a story about memory and identity, family and friendship. Frank Weld, an aging dad and a retired jewel thief, is losing his memory. His only friend, Jennifer, the town librarian, enjoys his company while sadly indulging his memory slips. His grown-up children, Hunter and Madison are having trouble taking care of their dad, so Hunter does what any caring son does in the near future: installs a caretaker robot in his home.

Unfortunately, Frank is none too pleased by his new helper, finding his presence unnerving and alien. In his old age, Frank is uncomfortable with most technology; the robot’s presence is, at first, annoying, and surreal. And yet, the robot quickly proves himself to be more than a machine or appliance. His programming is sophisticated; his demeanor is kind. He is, for all intents and purposes, a rational, caring friend. His advice and requirements that Frank eat healthier and exercise more, gradually succeed at improving Frank’s health and well-being.

But as Frank’s health improves, so do his ambitions. And above all else, the caretaker Robot is programmed to find an activity to keep its elderly charges active and engaged in their lives. Of course, the only activity that Frank has ever been truly engaged in is stealing things. He soon learns that the Robot will allow such pursuits as long as the risk/reward ratio is kept in balance. And so a new heist duo is born.