Movies & TV

10 Movies That Tackled A.I. and Robot Sex Before Westworld

Including the source material for HBO's hit series.
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Robots, computers, and everything in between have been on our radars for a while now. If we're not trying to defeat them, it seems like we're trying to sleep with them. Before Westworld made its premiere last year, movies had already taken their robots, made them sexy, and put them on the big screen. These violent delights make incredible films.

Westworld (1974)

Before HBO got ahold of it, Westworld was a cult classic film about what happens when the robots you fuck around with fuck back. Similar to the fictional television theme park, you can do whatever you want in the robot-laden land, but here, an infection spreads through the cyborgs, inspiring them to fight back and attack the town.

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Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997)

“Bring out the FEMBOTS!” As a ploy to take down Austin Powers, Dr. Evil and his team release a collection of women completely irresistible to the human man with guns in their, well, boobs. But if there’s one man who’s too much for the robots, it's Austin Powers himself.

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Electric Dreams (1984)

In the simplest terms, Electric Dreams is about a love triangle between a man, a woman, and his computer. Of course, a computer can’t naturally fall in love with someone, but one night, after a bottle of champagne is spilled on it, the machine becomes sentient. The phenomenon that a river of bubbly leads something into its most realized form? It’s the relatable a computer has ever been.

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Ex Machina (2014)

The 2015 critically acclaimed sci-fi picture follows Ava, a robot with artificial intelligence played by Alicia Vikander, who was designed by Nathan (Oscar Isaac) as a flirtatious robot. Plans go awry after Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson) arrives and helps free Ava, turning what was originally intended as an A.I. romantic partner into a force to be reckoned with.

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Her (2013)

Few performers in Hollywood can convincingly play a character who falls in love with the future version of Siri/Alexa. Even fewer can wreck an audience emotionally while playing in the actual voice of Siri/Alexa. But Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlett Johansson managed to do both in the Spike Jonze-directed Her. The film explores the complicated relationship of what it means to fall in love and what it means to be human.

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Lars and the Real Girl (2007)

In one of Ryan Gosling’s most endearing roles, he plays a recluse who finds comfort in a RealDoll (yes, the love doll) named Bianca. Treating her as a human, as opposed to a sex object, people of the town take his lead, hoping that by recognizing Bianca as a human, they can reach out to Gosling’s character and bring him back to reality.

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Blade Runner (1982)

Blade Runner is a classic A.I.-themed film noir (even if the sequel was just fine). Daryl Hannah plays Pris, one of the replicants that blade runner Rick Deckard must destroy. With superhuman strength (and very impressive gymnastic skills), the pleasure model proves to be a cunning foe for Deckard when he falls into her trap.

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Stepford Wives (2004)

A whole town of cyborgs created to be perfectly lovely and normal… what could go wrong? Made twice (once in 1975 and again in 2004) The Stepford Wives is about a Connecticut suburb transformed after one woman was wronged by her husband. The result? A cyborg city that can’t quite ever get being human right.

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A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001)

Maybe the most heartfelt robot movie of the bunch, the real sex robot is Jude Law. As a post-climate change earth deteriorates, humanoids, capable of thought and feelings, are tasked with trying to save the planet. The 2001 film is much more of a meditation on everlasting love than it is a futuristic erotic fantasy, but Jude’s doing his best out there to keep that physical side alive.

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Surrogates (2009)

Okay, it's not the best robot movie in the mix, but the 2009 film gives a look into a future where we’ve decided that it’s easier to give humans the ability to hurt each other via robots instead of trying to get along like normal people. Sounds about right. Every human has a surrogate, and they operate in the daily world while the people they are standing in for operate them from home.

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This story originally appeared on Esquire.com.

* Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.

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