Tagline: Crime has a new enemy.
Year: 2014 Runtime: 117 min
Director: José Padilha
Writer: Joshua Zetumer
Starring: Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Michael Keaton
Synopsis (from robocop.com): “When Alex Murphy – a loving husband, father and good cop doing his best to stem the tide of crime and corruption in Detroit – is critically injured, OmniCorp sees their chance to build a part-man, part-robot police officer. OmniCorp envisions a RoboCop in every city and even more billions for their shareholders, but they never counted on one thing: there is still a man inside the machine.”
I went into the movie theater thinking, “Why in the hell did I just waste my money?” From the moment I heard it announced I, and all of my friends, were beyond skeptical about this remake. I was likewise unimpressed when I saw the first pictures of the new suit. But beggars can’t be choosers, and January and February lousy for movies. So, I took my seat and prepared to be underwhelmed.
I was surprised. As it turns out RoboCop was really good. I was expecting the usual ho-hum, name recognition money-grab. Shitty remakes are most often the result of taking a franchise and slapping on a fresh coat of CGI. While the special effects are sweet, particularly the horrifying image of what’s “left” of Alex Murphy, RoboCop was the perfect vehicle to tell the story it set out to tell.
RoboCop manages its awesomeness in the same way the remake of Battlestar Galactica did—it’s relevant to us today. The film explores some questions in our collective consciousness without getting up it’s own ass about it. Namely, what is the role and responsibility of drones? What is free will? And most importantly, what is humanity?
All the while it manages to be an entertaining couple of hours. A juggling act done well.
Finally, as any good remake should, RoboCop manages to give homage to the original without too much fan fare. I’ll buy that for a dollar. Or, with inflation, $6.50 matinee.