We’ve seen some pretty imposing robots wreak havoc on film. The Terminator continues to be a man of his word ("I’ll be back!"), RoboCop continues to grapple with his human half while shooting off hundreds of rounds into his enemies heads, and the upcoming Ultron in Avengers 2 is hellbent on taking over the world with his near indestructible consciousness. And then there’s Chappie. Neill Blomkamp’s third sci-fi film introduces moviegoers to a new A.I., one that begins his life with the brain capacity of an infant but quickly develops into a gangster bot who likes to pop a few caps with his gaudy gold chains. He may not look the part, but Chappie can get the job done when he puts his mind to it.
But how does Chappie match up to the other robots of cinema history? Is he has badass as Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator, as gun happy as RoboCop or as clever as R2-D2? Or is he gentler than Wall-E?
9. Sico, Rocky IV
Sico is definitely larger than Wall-E and R2-D2, but its intelligence is far lower than any of the others on this list. Knowledge is power, amirite? Here’s how I look at it: if something were to go wrong in any of these robots’ programming, how much damage could it inflict given its capabilities? Sico could easily roll over Wall-E, but Wall-E is more agile and can cause some trouble if need be. R2 can whip out various gadgets to help get it out of any situation. Sico, on the other hand, is a slow-moving, slow-reacting bot. When push comes to shove, it’s as non-lethal as one can get.
8. Wall-E, Wall-E
If Wall-E was in a Pokemon-style battle against other cinematic bots, he would undoubtedly be crushed after one tackle attack. There’s no gentler artificially created soul than Wall-E. The lovable lil’ guy from the world of Disney and Pixar was created as a mini-trash compactor, but he became so much more than his programming. This A.I. experienced love, gentility, compassion, friendship, hope and perseverance…but nothing that might benefit him in a match. What Wall-E does have going for him is his elusiveness. He can skirt by with little notice from anyone around him. Bilbo Baggins has this same skill and it kept him alive while traversing the dangerous territories of the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings trilogy. But both he and Wall-E are at a loss when in direct hand-to-hand combat.
7. Johnny 5, Short Circuit
As we’ve learned time and again, human intelligence within the confines of a robotic cell is a dangerous thing. And the means by which Johnny 5 obtained its consciousness was almost clandestine. Though it looks like a larger version of Wall-E, it rolls around looking to satiate its hunger for "input," which makes it only slightly more lethal. We just hope it never comes to grow hungry for anything more than "input," such as humans, for example. While its capabilities are fairly limited, Johnny 5 is faster, more quick-thinking and more resourceful than most movie robots from the '80s.
6. R2-D2, Star Wars
R2-D2 may not seem like much, but its managed to survive six feature films within the Star Wars universe. And that's thanks in large part to its wit. He's by no means a battle droid. In fact, his main function is to accompany pilots on X-wings in order to man and repair the tech when needed. But much like the other robots in this countdown, it far surpassed its programming. When cornered, its been known to slather his enemies in fuel and set ablaze using the flame from its thrusters. R2 has also been known to waltz through an active warzone (we're thinking of Episode 2 in the Petranaki arena). The droid serve many functions and often times know more about what's really going on than any of the humans.
5. TARS, Interstellar
Interstellar had one of the more bizarre robot assistants we’ve ever seen. With the voice of Bill Irwin, TARS gave a new definition to the term gangly. With a little momentum, TARS can turn itself into a wheel and pummel everything that lies in its wake. Even R2 isn’t durable enough to stay intact under the crushing weight of its pillars. TARS also mold its shape to produce additional arms that can carry people to safety…or crush them, depending on the need. Its material is unknown, but it can withstand the cold temperatures of open space and even (barely) survive a trip through a black hole. Add all of that to his sass, intellect and military robot programming, and he’s one piece of tech you want fighting on your team.
4. Chappie, Chappie
Chappie may not be as smart or as resourceful as R2, but he does have the bodily advantages of a humanoid robot. Yes, R2 has his own set of thrusters, a taser, a video projector and the means of hacking into most computer systems and perform spaceship repairs, but his meager form is no match for the heat Chappie is packing. Blomkamp’s A.I. is capable of handling guns like his "daddy," slinging ninja stars, can withstand gunfire, and can take down other robotics more than three times his size. Where he falters is in his intelligence. He may be like DC’s Amazo android, meaning he can see something and both mimic it and download its information, but he still has the naivety of child new to the world. Many people try to take advantage of this quality, and it even led to him getting his arm sawed off.
3. Baymax, Big Hero 6
Baymax may adore chasing butterflies, but the animated marshmallow can pack a punch when he’s all suited up in his gear. He might be a Disney character…well, first he was a Marvel Comics character and then he was adapted into what we see in Big Hero 6, but he’s one of the most dangerous robots of the big screen. Remember when Hiro took out his "nice" chip and unleashed his full rage in a moment of desperation? With no morality holding him back, he is one lethal weapon. But most of the time, he is held back, and his abilities and actions are limited to what Hiro commands of him. Baymax is capable of thinking on his feet, but he will only take the violence so far.
2. RoboCop, RoboCop
RoboCop has the best of both worlds: he has the intelligence, strength and durability of an unstoppable robot, as well as the emotional capacity of a human. In the Joel Kinnaman-led reboot, he was able to take out even the most large and CGI-heavy weaponry with a series of impossible acrobatics and shots. He definitely has the bronze to lay waste to anyone and everything in his path, but there is a way to take advantage of his human half. He hesitated upon seeing his wife, Clara Murphy, which isn’t good if he’s bracing against a hail of gunfire and he needs to react quickly and efficiently…
1. Terminator, The Terminator
…This is why the Terminator is the most deadly movie robot in this countdown.
He doesn’t have to worry about humanity. He doesn’t have to worry about anyone besides his target/mission (depending on whether he’s the good or bad Terminator). He’s also practically impossible to beat. And if someone somehow manages to do away with his current form, the forces that be will just send another one back in time to finish the job. The T-101 model can withstand nearly any blow, and he has the ability to avoid the ones he can’t. There’ve been many models of the robot, including the morphing T-1000, but none are more badass than Schwarzenegger’s iconic turn. Even the upgrades coming making appearances in the new Terminator trilogy can’t bring him down. How do we know? ‘Cause Schwarzenegger already confirmed he’ll be back for the second and third installments.
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