Starring Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Michael Keaton, Samuel L. Jackson
Depending on which side of the fence you reside on, 1987’s RoboCop is either a great footnote in cinema or it’s a pure junk pop cinematic experience. I tend to think it’s the latter. Yes, I love RoboCop mightly and you can’t argue that the movie didn’t nail what it set out to achieve, but like a lot of Paul Verhoeven’s films, there are moments where the word cringe comes into play. I guess that’s the beauty of Paul Verhoeven and for a stretch of time back in the day; there was no one like him. With this being the second Verhoeven film to get a remake (the first being the truly awful Total Recall remake), there was more than a fair share of people (including myself) who felt remaking RoboCop was crossing the line a little bit. What could someone do to enhance and improve upon the original? It’s a question that tries to get answered in RoboCop circa 2014. And while the movie held my attention, it also did more wrong than good.
The idea of a police state and a world that has technology protecting us seems more prevalent now than it did back in 1987. And had the original film come out today, I have no doubt in my mind that the enthusiasm and love for it would remain intact. If you watch it today, the original ages really well. Hell even the special effects looks pretty good. So again the question is asked, why remake it at all? I still don’t have an answer for that and I could spend an infinite amount of time trying to figure it out, I’ll instead just take a deep breath and try to watch RoboCop, circa 2014, with as much as a open mind as I possibly could. The results of this film are somewhat surprising, given not only the fanboy backlash, but a leaked script that showed how awful this film could have been and trailers that left you with a “who gives a shit” response. New RoboCop will probably be forgotten pretty quickly, but at least its leaps and bounds better than the Total Recall remake, even better than RoboCop 2 or 3, but that's not really saying much.
The new RoboCop, just like the first one, centers on Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman) a Detroit cop, who is just trying to do some good. But Murphy crosses paths with the wrong people, resulting suffering life threatening injuries from his car blowing up. But Murphy's life is spared thanks to Omnicorp, who use Murphy as a guinea pig of sorts. You see Omnicorp is looking to install their robots on U.S soil as protection against all the evil that lurks in the shadows. But Omnicorp has a bad image problem and hope that installing a little humanity into one of it's machines will help sway the public to their side. But Omnicorp is divided on how to proceed between it's founder Raymond Sellars (MIchael Keaton) and the doctor who put Murphy back together, Dennett Norton (Gary Oldman). But Murphy starts to recall how his demise came about and sets out to bring down the hammer of justice.