The year is 2031 AD and Britain has lost forty thousand troops in operations in the US leaving many wives widowed. To support the British war widows, cybernetic robots called Jouets have been issued to them. However, some Jouets have experienced problems, becoming emotionally unstable and engaging in relationships with humans.
Winner of Best Sci-Fi Director in London Limelight Film Awards, Mike Buonaiuto tells a beautifully dark and compelling tale of genetically engineered machines cable of loving. Jouet embarks on a question of “Can robots have emotions?” and if so “can they fall in love?” It is clear how deeply science is entwined in our lives. Imagine a world without any synthetic plastics, modern medicine or worse, no iPhones! The wonders of science have given us so much and answered many questions but honestly I'm still waiting for my jet pack and android friend.
Starring Mark Phillimore as the artificial Jouet, Buonaiuto explores the question of robots and emotion. Left alone, we follow Jouet around a vast and empty house in the not too distant future. The curious Jouet investigates the bedroom of the wife's deceased husband and suddenly overcomes by furious rage and jealousy. Shooting the vast and void house with the Technicolor's CineStyle Picture Style For Canon HD-SLRs creates an eerie and tense but beautifully lit atmosphere. As a viewer we feel trapped in a huge house with a robot that has unbalanced emotions, that fill the tension with an uncertainty of stability. Through Jouet, Buonaiuto gives a machine with all the functions that make us human with personality, emotion and thought. Watching the short film we begin to connect with Jouet knowing that most of us have been through a situation where we have unavoidable fallen into forbidden love. We develop a very human emotional bond with Jouet, despite the fact that this human link we have with him is just mere wires, computer chips, conductors, metal, motors, and an exoskeleton that resembles a living man. It is not the skin, hair or eyes that make him human but rather the ability to feel and have a conscience.
Jouet proves to be a fantastic Sci-Fi with a brilliant plot that paves the way of raw human emotion all in one android. Even after the short finishes and you finish your cup of tea, you begin to endeavour into questions of how in the future we would deal with robotic politics. If they have the power to feel, learn and even think should we grant them human rights?