December 01, 2022
A funny, quirky and charming little film. I was a bit surprised to discover a mid-00s Japanese film headlined by Tadanobu Asano I hadn't seen yet, but apparently, this one is pretty obscure. It's probably due to its short length (and possibly because of the b&w cinematography), but that's no reason to avoid Capricious Robot as it is quite delightful.
N is a pretty particular mangaka. He lives alone with his mother, a woman who pampers him way too much. When she suddenly dies N is unable to live by himself. He sees a newspaper ad for robot help, and after a quick trip to the robot lab, he comes home with a special model that fits his needs. The robot isn't quite what N imagined though.
Tadanobu Asano is perfect for his part, the CG is a little basic, and yet, the effects lend the film a pleasant charm. The premise is simple and the few plot twists are predictable, but the deadpan delivery is on point and nothing is dragged out too long. Capricious Robot was a lovely find. Not a true personal favorite, but the kind of quirky filer you only get from Japan.