Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Robocop (USA, 2014)





Nine Things about the Movie Robocop (2014)

1. This is a "remake" of the classic 1987 film. But while the name and basic plot is the same, this is a very different movie.

2. It's set in the year 2028 where the Omnicorp company sells robot police to the U.S. military for use in countries overseas. But they are not allowed in the U.S. because Americans are paranoid about robots running law enforcement.

3. When police officer Alex Murphy gets blown up in front of his house, Omnicorp gets the idea to take what's left of him and make him a robot. This is done in the hopes that by retaining a basic human identity, Americans will accept robotic police. But Murphy's human ethics conflict with his robotic programming, and it causes problems.

4. Both versions of the movie are making social commentaries on their times. The 1987 version was a satire on 80's American consumer culture and excess. The 2014 version is more of a commentary on national security, and the boundaries of technology and humanity.

5. The 1987 version was rated R and was very violent and bloody for its time. This version does have a lot of shootouts and killing, but there is almost no blood. It is rated PG-13.

6. In the 1987 version Murphy is actually killed and resurrected, but his human memories are all wiped. In this version, Murphy isn't actually killed; leaving his humanity intact is a key plot element.

7. This version is much more philosophical than the original. It's partly an existential meditation on identity, free will, and what makes us human.

8. One of the more interesting changes is the character of Murphy's partner, Lewis. In the 1987 original, Lewis was a white woman. In this version, Lewis is a black man.

9. If you are expecting a direct remake of the 1987 cult classic, you will be disappointed. But the director wisely left the original alone and basically made a new movie. If you like movies that mix action with intellect, this is worth seeing.