- Actors: Andreas Wilson, Lisette Pagler, Johan Paulsen, Pia Halvorsen, Natalie Minnevik
- Directors: Lars Lundström
- Producers: SVT, DR, Nordisk Film
- Format: Color, Import, PAL, Subtitled, Miniseries
- Language: German, Swedish
- Subtitles: German
- Region: Region 2 (This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
- Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
- Number of discs: 4
- MPAA Rating:
- Run Time: 583 minutes
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- ASIN: B00BJWFHZ6
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Real Humans / Äkta människor (Region 2)
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PAL REGION 2 DVD REQUIRES A REGION FREE DVD UNIT FOR PLAYBACK. WILL PLAY ON MOST COMPUTER DVD DRIVES. <NO ENGLISH SUBTITLES> In a parallel present the artificial human has come into its own. Robots no longer have anything robot-like about them. New technology and advancements in the field of science have made it possible to manufacture a product - a kind of mechanized servant - that is so similar to a real human that it can often be considered a perfectly good substitute. The Human Robot (HUBOT) have also given rise to new problems and dilemmas. Thorny legal questions have increasingly started to occupy people's minds and are still waiting to be answered: Who is responsible for the actions of a hubot? Do hubots have some form of "hubot rights"? Should they be paid for their work? As an ever growing number of people form relationships with hubots, the boundaries between human and machine become blurred. When humans make copies of themselves, which are so close to the real thing they form emotional bonds, the questions arises - What does it really mean to be 'human'?
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"At your service, Mr. Underhill..."
Journey to a futuristic Sweden, where man's science has perfected the technology of "hubots" - virtual simulacra of human beings - but people still use flip phones, laptops, the internet and cars that are destroying the environment. It's basically present-day Sweden, only now with androids. Hubots are consumer goods and the multilayered script shows the varied ways in which their owners lose their own humanity exploiting their replicants, parodying how human beings have already been befuddled, diminished and defeated by their cars, PC's, the internet and their smartphones. Because hubots aren't human, real human beings take license in how they treat them - with hubot's being groped at the office, beaten to a pulp in factories, jacked by hubot chop-shops, put to work like prostitutes, gang raped or just shut down by when their owners don't want to deal with them. In other words, there aren't that many really humane people in "Real Humans".
"they evolved, they rebelled, and they've got a plan."
"Real Humans" begins with a group of hubots wandering across the country side, apparently autonomous and on a mission. These hubots dream of a world where they can live freely, but their means for achieving that aim are far from clear. There's a home invasion of a remote farm house, and people (real ones) end up dead. The group fragments, and one of their number is lost to hubot scavengers. As the remaining hubots struggle to remain undetected, they learn to adapt, coming to greater terms with helpful or suspicious humans. Meanwhile, we learn that a counter-movement - "Äkta människor" - opposed to hubots. These anti-Hubot Taliban are repelled by the Hubot owners' willingness to replace genuine humans with Hubots for any number of roles, whether commercial or emotional.
We meet Roger, a factory worker made obsolete both at work and home by hubots. Roger's anger will destroy both his job and his family, and ironically drive him into the arms of what he hates most. His neighbors, the Engmans, will finally receive their first hubot, a beautiful android they name Anita, oblivious to her origins as one of the autonomous Hubots seen at the beginning of the show. Inger Engman is a savvy lawyer whose job will see her drawn into the hubot conspiracy, representing hubot owners, then the hubots themselves. Lennart, Inger's father, must give up Odi - his beloved son-he-never-had hubot - for the matronly and controlling Vera. Therese, Roger's wife, leaves him when he melts down over her hubot. Without her husband, Therese bonds with her hubot, but even that love has its limits. There's Leo, a human, hubot-hybrid (try saying that 5 times fast in Swedish) searching for Anita. Then there's Bea, the show's Blade Runner, a hotshot cop assigned to a unit specifically tasked to hunt down rogue hubots.
"So, how do we know who's human? If I was an imitation, a perfect imitation, how would you know if it was really me?"
"Real Humans" doesn't rely on expository dialog to tell you what's going on, or kick things off with a "Blade Runner" style pre-credits crawl, so going in it's difficult to know what kind of show you're signing up for. Is this a thriller? Will we see an epic "Planet of the Apes" scene of laser-gun toting hubots on robot horses? Is the show going to boil down to a series of episodes showing how human beings are degenerating because of their reliance and exploitation of these machines? "Real Humans" excels when it shows itself capable of being any of these, with enough plot to let you know it's going somewhere. Like shows on American cable, you'll have to go through a fair amount of filler before the action starts to pick up.
"Replicants are like any other machine - they're either a benefit or a hazard"
WHY REAL HUMANS DISAPPOINTS: No show is perfect. For "Real Humans", the flaws become obvious near the end of the 1st season. It's when the action heats up that "Real Humans" starts to break down. The writers know that they couldn't keep the show going on with jokes aimed at people drought down by their gadgets. They need a story and have to fall back on the conspiracy of autonomous humans and a covert operation by the government to prevent that from happening. Various agendas on both sides become apparent on both sides of the human-hubot divide. Unfortunately, revealing how far apart certain allies are makes you realize how underdeveloped the characters are - as if the writers needed natural allies to conflict with each other in order to stretch the plot.
Does that make "Real Humans" a failure? Hardly. This is a meaty show (real meat!!!), and there's more than enough to commit you for season 2. If anything, ask yourself when you might next have an excuse to watch Swedish TV? Probably in 75 years. By then you'll be dead...or a hubot.