W.I.S.O.R. the Robo-Welder [DVD] [2001]

Because the documentary is shot on high-end video, one expects the transfer to DVD to be clean and precise, and indeed it is. As for the extras, the very dry interview with M.I.T. professor Walter Minsky, "father of artificial intelligence," really doesn't have much to do with the subject of W.I.S.O.R. -- a repair robot really doesn't make its own decisions -- and the piece seems to go on forever. The photos of the completed machine seem to be added just for the record -- there are only two pictures on one page. Better is the teasing trailer for director Michel Negroponte's award-winning documentary Jupiter's Wife as well as several other trailers for distribution company Docurama's fine selection of films. Get this one for the main attraction -- the making of the W.I.S.O.R. robot -- and not the tacked-on bonuses.
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Special Features

  • Interview with Marvin Minsky, legendary M.I.T. professor and the father of Artificial Intelligence
  • Detailed Robot photos
  • Negroponte's original film trailer of "Jupiter's Wife"
  • Interactive menus
  • Scene selection


The ancient insulated steam pipes that lie under the streets and buildings of New York City are in need of constant repair. They also are very dangerous when they blow, causing injuries, damage, and inconvenience. The steam is vital to the success of the city -- it powers everything from clothes presses to elevators -- as well as the survival of the citizens, who rely on it for heat even in the most modern skyscrapers. The only way to repair the 16-inch pipes is to close off the street and dig up the road to get to the break -- at a cost of about 35,000 dollars at each break. But wait, what's that thing crawling along inside the pipe with a blow torch? A pyromaniacal snake? A fire-breathing dragon? No, it's W.I.S.O.R., the robo-welder to the rescue. ~ Buzz McClain, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Image coming soon
    George Bartenieff - Robot
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