Southern Man

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Movie Review: Robocop

This is a Teen Daughter weekend and it turned out to be fairly low key but much to Southern Man's surprise when he offered her the choice of a movie to see she selected RoboCop.

Southern Man had his doubts (the original was a favorite and he wasn't all that excited about a PG-13 remake of a hard-R film) but went with an open mind anyway. And indeed the new Robocop film has quite a bit going for it. There was considerable exploration of the impact on his wife and son, for example, so with her as the love interest "Lewis" was transformed into his male partner. They throw out a few lines from the old movie ("I wouldn't buy that for a dollar") and some interesting takes on RoboCop-1987 scenes to amuse us older fans. The principle antagonist was a criminal kingpin in league with crooked cops, rather than with the corporation. And there was even quite a bit of emphasis on Robocop's abilities and vulnerabilities ("You're tough, but not invulnerable") so Southern Man was hoping for action scenes with actual tactics.

He would be disappointed. Robocop's preferred strategy was (again) to blast his way into a crowd of bad guys, shrug off their (sometimes considerable) firepower, and shoot whatever he saw. At one point he even takes ED-209 fire right to the back - which according to earlier dialog should have perforated him like Swiss cheese - with little ill effect. But later RoboCop does manage to shoot off his own (robotic) hand. RoboCop, again, is as vulnerable (or invulnerable) as the plot demands.

The new and improved ED-209. However, no stairs were attempted in this film.

The PG-13 rating meant minimal blood and gore and "taser bullets" that incapacitated without killing and so on but we do get a startling look at RoboCop's remaining human innards.

Followed by the obligatory Iron Man-esque automatic suit assembly.

So Robocop 2014 gets a "meh" thumbs up but Southern Man may dig through the DVDs and watch the original one day soon.


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