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...and came out partially convinced that, had the REAL visionaries behind this film had their way, this movie would have been likely superior to the end product. Executive Meddling, as usual, led to an obvious example of money being more important than the artistic vision.
But it isn't bad, per se. When you read into how the producers picked away at the director's vision for the movie, you come to realize that serious effort into revitalizing the franchise took place, but in the end, marketability took precedence over artistic vision. The film certainly has its upsides, such as a more sympathetic storyline for Alex Murphy, and some undertones that would make the villains of the original weep in fear. But it did suffer a bit on the creative side, thanks to the producers.
In the end, this is a very toned-down, more serious (a bit too much so), less symbolic modern rendition of Paul Verhoeven's satisfying classic.
First, the good bits - the action's great. The CG is pretty good. The themes are actually updated pretty well to be relevant for the new era as well.
I actually liked how they gave Murphy much more backstory and development. Unlike the original, where Robocop starts off fully-robot, Murphy starts off fully-human here. But then that issue gets "fixed" as we enter the second act of the film. So instead of a rather powerful theme from the original where a man who has lost everything regains his humanity... this one is more like a man who already has his humanity just stops some people from drugging him up. Which doesn't feel as meaningful.
Now here's another bit where it falls apart: in the original, the villains are over-the-top, cookie cutter villains. But the whole movie is like that. The entire thing borders on the edge of cartoonish, dark comedy - from the villains to the action to the in-universe TV commercials.
In this remake, the villains are pretty cookie-cutter villains who are evil just because. But there's no comedy to be found in this film, it takes itself way too seriously and as a result, the villains are just far too bland and shallow to really have any impact in a film with such a serious tone.
I can see that they meant well and they did make a serious attempt at a good story, but it just doesn't quite make it. It's an okay film though.
This would have been a forgettable action film at best if it hadn't been a remake and quite possibly would have been passed over for better scripts.
As it is, it is simply a time killer, when you can't find the DVD of the original. So, not high praise.
I am not a diehard RoboCop fan. I don't have any waxing nostalgia for the original movies. I saw them, for the first time, exactly one week before watching this one. And I didn't particularly like them. They had all the elements for So Bad, It's Good, but failed on the execution and left me yawning. That being said, this movie improved my opinion of the originals, because it made them look good by comparison.
What was obviously being attempted here was a combo of Darker And Grittier while keeping the charm of the originals. And it just did not come together. No action scene was memorable. We even lost the iconic scene of Alex Murphy being pumped full of lead for a quick explosion. Not a single sequence made me sit up and say "Holy shit! That was cool!" If there was a decent Holy Shit Quotient, it might have made it possible to overlook some of the film's other sins (take Terminator for example). As it was, there was no awesome action to break up the parade of worn out tropes, poorly developed characters, and flat acting. One of my biggest complaints on the original was that they did not focus enough on Murphy as a person before he was RoboCop to make me care about his loss of humanity and his family afterward. I could see the attempt to fix that in this film, but the execution spectacularly failed. By the first time Claire was crying, I was thinking I Dont Care What Happens To These People. And by shifting focus to the family, they took the one relationship that was well developed from the original, and threw it into a satellite character. Lewis might as well have died in the first scene. It would not have affected the rest of the movie in the slightest.
As always though, Gary Oldman was a joy to watch. If you could say any bad movie had a saving grace, it's casting him. But if that's the only positive point you have, is it really a positive?
In the end, it was a mediocre script, with a mediocre cast, and a mediocre execution. Thoroughly unnecessary as the original movie pretty much took us on that trip already and - unbelievably - did a better job of it.
I'd like to start this review of Robocop 2014 by saying that Robocop 1987 was never one of those "greatist movies of all time" WETHTM for me, yes, it did have it's moments but from my perspective it was always just a interesting movie about a cyborg police officer that happend to be edgy.
With that out of the way the short of it is that I went, I saw, and I liked this Robocop. Which perhaps in the tradition of Battle Star Galactica was reimagined for a new audiance with upgraded tech and a diffrent tone. I had a healthy amount of scheptisim going into the theater, for example Kinnaman's hand sticking out of the costume was, well, strange. But for the most part I went in with an open mind and got a pretty neat movie for my trouble.
I particullary liked the new direction for Murphy's Mechanical Miscellania some part of me always hovered on the question of Murphy in 1987. While we may or maynot find out what happed with the data-spike, or if Frank Miller was right and there was a reload mechanism, Murphy having two hip holsters was a nice shout out to RoboCop: Prime Directives vrs the fan made airtank. But really who needs a data-spike now with wireless technomancy.
Perhaps it's Faux Symbolism but the detached hand even grew on me with perhaps a bit of fridge brilliance. Here was a bit of organic tissue that was controlled by a machine that was controlled by another bit of organic tissue. Metaphor for the rest of the movie? a segway into evil Steve Job's personality? Epileptic trees? Who knows, perhapse there is a perfectly legitamet crime fighting reason that it's there? Maybe, but I still kind of like to think there was a link to Sellers.
But while I can probably wax phillisofical about the hand I do think it's appropriate to mention that while 2014 recaptured for me at least the feel of 1987 it still left some niggling questions in the back of my mind. spoiler alert.
When Gary Oldmen was talking the patient arguing against rage quitting in the face of emotional and technological obstacles Dr. Norton stoped. he could have given a uplifing counter argument. Isn't it bad form to manipulate the audiance this way? Was there really no time? If I'm meant to answer it myself should I post it on fan fiction dot net?
But what can I say I'm just one Troper. Go see it for yourself, perhaps you'll like it.
As the modern revolution of shitty remakes had become a common sight (Total Recall, Conan the Barbarian etc.), I was reluctantly dragged along to witness what I thought would be 90 minutes of a glitzy, overdone trainwreck.
Was quite surprised to have watched a film that, while unable to match the cinematic highs of its predecessor, was still a half-decent remake. I was actually going for Alex Murphy all through the movie. No spoilers, but I enjoyed how the film makers decided to show his humanity first before muting it. Got me a little more into it, but others may disagree.
Yet the overall tone was a little too cynical for my taste. Ever since Christopher Nolan rocked up to the scene in 2005 with Batman Begins, all heroic figures thereon after have been busy exploring the tragic psyche of what it means to be a saviour. Since the original's appeal did rely somewhat on its 80s black comedy, the remake's lack of it did bring it down a notch or two. Although I understand that young audiences might not connect with the film if it were styled in 80s camp, I do feel a little nostalgic.
However, the special effects are quite impressive and will look great in HD, so I'm still keen on the release on DVD. Will actually purchase, not pirate.
Big fan of Joel Kinnaman ever since The Killing, so I was interested to see how he would do Alex Murphy. I know Kinnaman's a great actor because of his other work, and he did a decent job with this monumental role. Although I didn't feel as if he was irreplaceable as the RoboCop, the acting was good enough to guide the film.
Gary Oldman is always great. He will never not fit into a movie because he's just too good. Go you, Gary.
Iíll be honest.
I didnít walk into RoboCop with high hopes. I walked in with lowered expectations.
The odds were not in its favor. Hollywood has been trying for years to put out a Winter blockbuster, but February is pretty much their tax write-off movie month. Marvel movie clunkers Daredevil, Ghost Rider, and Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance all came out in February. A Good Day to Die Hard, the latest PG-13 installment of the originally R-rated movie series came out in February. Now Columbia/MGM are trying their luck with a remake of the 1987 classic starring fan favourite Peter Weller, but with Joel Kinnaman, a virtual unknown by my lights in the title role?
Samuel L. Jacksonís name wasnít even enough to get my hopes up. At least, not his name alone. Heís made some picks I canít back him up on. But I saw the names Michael Keaton, Gary Oldman and Jackie Earle Haley attached, and my eyebrow went up even if my hopes did not.
It was a pleasant surprise to say that I enjoyed this movie quite a bit more than I thought I would. They made up for the gratuitous violence by giving the movie a solid heart, and making OCP/Omnicorp even more detestable than they were in the original film. Wisely, Joshua Zetumer didnít try to go for a shot-for-shot remake. He took the path of making it almost an alternate universe version of the story with a lot of visual callbacks to the original to appeal to the nostalgic fans who were looking to see their old hero in a new form.
The core elements remain the same: good cop Alex Murphy gets on the wrong side of the bad guys, and they do him grievous bodily harm. OCP, looking for a toehold with their war machines in the American market, convinces grieving wife Clara to let them help her husband by outfitting him with experimental cybernetic prostheses. Alex is introduced to the public, who embrace him as RoboCop. Things go well with the machine pulling most of the heavy lifting until the man claws his way back to the surface and solves his own murder.
read the rest at http://womenwriteaboutcomics.com/2014/02/17/chick-at-the-flicks-robocop/
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