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    Default Robocop remake

    Hi everyone! Last night in Seattle I got to see a sneak preview of the Robocop remake. I was expecting it to be disappointing and pointless, like most other remakes, but I was actually quite pleasantly surprised. My 3-word review:


    I wrote a longer (mostly non-spoiler) review on my blog, if you're curious to know more...

    If you're at all curious about this movie, go see it. It doesn't try to replace the original. They're sci-fi movies of a different flavor: both good, just different.
    I was kind of shocked.
    Last edited by Muz; 2014-02-11 at 05:21 PM.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Well, this is disappointing. I was dead set on hating this movie on the principles of it being a remake alone, but you've managed to get me interested. I'm still waiting for a few more reviews to come in, but if they turn out to be generally positive, I might even consider watching it.

    I guess one of the things I'm concerned about is whether or not he actually comes across as a robot cyborg policeman. From the trailers and other promotional material, he just feels like a regular old cop in power armor. It's the exposed hand, I think. If they can really make him feel like a robot, then maybe I'll warm up to it. It's definitely encouraging to hear they used the same theme song, and have plenty of scenes of him doing cop stuff. Those were some of my favorite scenes in the original.

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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by AdmiralCheez View Post
    I guess one of the things I'm concerned about is whether or not he actually comes across as a robot cyborg policeman. From the trailers and other promotional material, he just feels like a regular old cop in power armor. It's the exposed hand, I think. If they can really make him feel like a robot, then maybe I'll warm up to it. It's definitely encouraging to hear they used the same theme song, and have plenty of scenes of him doing cop stuff. Those were some of my favorite scenes in the original.
    I was worried about that exact thing. The trailers made me think it was just some guy in a suit, hanging out, being a cyborg. That's a large part of what I meant by the trailers being deceiving. I was pleased with how they handled it. He did feel like a robot.

    Oh, and trust me, don't worry about the exposed hand.

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    His becoming a robot comes in stages. After they get him built, certain things occur that lead them to do adjustments on him that gradually dial down his humanity until he's just a bot and a product. I really liked how they handled it.

    As for the hand...that plus his head, upper spine, and lungs are all that's left of him after the conversion. The scene with the mirror I mentioned involves them showing him the reality of his new situation by taking him APART while he watches until he's just his organic parts (in a protective casing) hanging there. It's actually hard to watch, but in a good way. And that hand? It's just hanging there when they do this. The arm is gone. I think they'd have gotten rid of the hand entirely if it weren't for Omnicorp's PR campaign to make him SEEM more human.
    Last edited by Muz; 2014-02-12 at 05:19 PM.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    I honestly don't see the point of the remake. From trailers and pre-screening materials it seems like they are missing most of the political satire, which quite frankly was the real story. Plus, making it PG-13 is just dumb.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by Avilan the Grey View Post
    I honestly don't see the point of the remake. From trailers and pre-screening materials it seems like they are missing most of the political satire, which quite frankly was the real story. Plus, making it PG-13 is just dumb.
    After read Muz's blog, this post is very funny.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Well, it is mostly post cyberpunk than cyberpunk. Not to mention that remake world is a bit better than the original, though not without flaws. At least the omni corp was a bit competent on making ed209 functional.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    I watched this movie and really liked it. Like the OP said, this is not a "Turn Your Brain Off" sort of summer movie. I also agree it's a different movie from the original.

    This remake plays well to 2014 sensibilities, not 1984 sensibilities (does this qualify as a pun?). Frankly, if I watched the original movie today, I'd feel like it's a comic book movie. I mean c'mon, some guy gets shot to bloody bits by a malfunctioning ED-209 in a corporate boardroom, and it doesn't matter and is never mentioned again? That's not realistic unless you put yourself into a comic book i.e. satirical mindset. This movie is not in that vein, except for the ending on the rooftop.

    I didn't like the lead actor in the trailers, but grew to appreciate him in the movie. I think he did justice to the character.

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    For me, comparing New Robocop the old Robocop is entirely missing the point. Did it need a remake? No, probably not. But, here's the thing, the original Robocop is rated R. New Robocop is rated M (although other countries have rated it PG...M in Australia is basically PG but you have to be accompanied by an adult). This allows it to reach a wider audience. In a very real sense, New Robocop is not for fans of the original. New Robocop is a movie for people who haven't seen - or can't see - the original.

    The gratuitous ultra-violence is gone. Because it's no longer the 80s. Robocop (and, to a lesser extent, Demolition Man) made the ultra-violence satire because they could. Now, in 2014, violent movies aren't really a thing that exists anymore - not in the mainstream, anyway. So, 2014-ocop can't 'satirise' ultra-violence like the original because there's nothing to satirise anymore.

    Samuel L. Jackson's character is very clearly political satire, I also get the feeling that on weekends, that character goes out to beat up hippies.

    If you liked 2014-ocop, see the original Robocop.
    If you've seen the original Robocop, you are under no obligation at all to see 2014-ocop, and, if you do end up hating it, comparing it to the original is missing the point because of the 20-year gap in sensibilities and rating change make it impossible to compare the two.
    You may as well compare Aliens and Toy Story.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Closer to 30 years, actually.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Then why call it Robocop?
    Besides, the whole POINT with the original (Robocop) WAS the political satire.

    To me this is the same league as the remake of Total Recall or Footloose for that matter: A remake nobody asked for, that doesn't do anythnig good, and really should not have been made.

    Why are there so many remakes of 80ies movies right now?

    The new Terror on Elm Street sucked.
    They are casting a new Point Break movie??? Seriously??? Who on EARTH wanted a remake of that?

    But hey, let's remake everything. How about a Darker And Edgier 16 Candles? When Harry Met Sally really begs for a remake, doesn't it?

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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by Avilan the Grey View Post
    Why are there so many remakes of 80ies movies right now?
    Because the people who saw them as teenagers are now grown up and in the position to make them.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by Thiel View Post
    Because the people who saw them as teenagers are now grown up and in the position to make them.
    But that's my point, because it seems that none of us that actuallly SAW them WANTS them remade. It seems more like a cynical bid to cash on on 80ies nostalgia than that the people who loved these movies as teens really want to remake them themselves.
    Last edited by Avilan the Grey; 2014-02-13 at 05:06 AM.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    If you asked me which is better, the Total Recall remake, the Fright Night remake, or the Robocop remake... I'd say the last one without question.

    And it has nothing to do with the fact that Colin Farrel is in both of the worse ones. Robocop remake is simply better. It felt like it had a point in existing. It is different from the original, but not in a bad way.

    Also, remakes are not intrinsically bad. Every Shakespeare play is constantly being "remade". Remakes are only bad, when they're bad.

    And yes I know Samuel L Jackson's character is political satire. When I said "satire", I meant "a story whose plot and characters aren't supposed to be taken seriously, because the situation is too contrived, or the characters are too brain-dead, or they feel like cardboard rather than real people... but the film as a whole still works well because it's conveying satire not a realistic story." And take off any nostalgia goggles and that is the original Robocop: contrived unrealistic situations and cardboard characters.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Avilan the Grey View Post
    It seems more like a cynical bid to cash on on 80ies nostalgia than that the people who loved these movies as teens really want to remake them themselves.
    Except that they aren't cynical cash-ins. If they were going for nostalgia, they'd make movies exactly the same, or they'd simply re-release the original remastered or in 3D - like with Jurassic Park last year - and then you wouldn't need a remake. I think the best remake so far that I've seen is Dredd, but, that's mostly because the original was kind of terrible.

    The other thing people seem to 'forget', does anyone even remember Robocop II and III, which were basically made for kids? People seem to forget that those movies happened.

    Compared to what 2014-ocop could have been, it's pretty much a masterpiece.

    Quote Originally Posted by Avilan the Grey View Post
    But that's my point, because it seems that none of us that actuallly SAW them WANTS them remade.
    That was the point I made earlier. 2014-ocop is not for you. It's for 12-17 year-olds in 2014. Not for people who were 16 in 1987. As far as I'm concerned, 2014-ocop is a remake done exactly correctly.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesegear View Post
    Except that they aren't cynical cash-ins. If they were going for nostalgia, they'd make movies exactly the same, or they'd simply re-release the original remastered or in 3D - like with Jurassic Park last year - and then you wouldn't need a remake. I think the best remake so far that I've seen is Dredd, but, that's mostly because the original was kind of terrible.

    The other thing people seem to 'forget', does anyone even remember Robocop II and III, which were basically made for kids? People seem to forget that those movies happened.

    Compared to what 2014-ocop could have been, it's pretty much a masterpiece.



    That was the point I made earlier. 2014-ocop is not for you. It's for 12-17 year-olds in 2014. Not for people who were 16 in 1987. As far as I'm concerned, 2014-ocop is a remake done exactly correctly.
    1. Dredd was not a remake, it was a reboot. That's what happens with francises, just like Batman or Superman.

    2. Um no. You are misremembering. RC II was BLOODIER and MORE VIOLENT than the first one, including graphic images of 12 year old drug dealer murdering people, and a murderous cyborg slaughtering tens of civilians and at least three times as many cops.
    The THIRD one was the child-friendly one, though.

    3. ANd hence my point: Why remake Robocop if you are not going to remake robocop? Why not call it something completely different? If it has nothing to do with the original?
    Last edited by Avilan the Grey; 2014-02-13 at 09:09 AM.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by Avilan the Grey View Post
    3. ANd hence my point: Why remake Robocop if you are not going to remake robocop? Why not call it something completely different? If it has nothing to do with the original?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avilan the Grey View Post
    1. Dredd was not a remake, it was a reboot. That's what happens with francises, just like Batman or Superman.
    What's the difference? Is the Amazing Spider Man a reboot or a remake? How do we decide these?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chen View Post
    What's the difference? Is the Amazing Spider Man a reboot or a remake? How do we decide these?
    To me it's easy:
    Dredd etc is based in another media. Like Spider Man or Hulk. That's a reboot, when you disregard the previous movie and instead draw new inspiration from the source.

    A remake is when you redo something that is original. Like Robocop, or Predator or Finding Nemo.

    So Amazing Spider Man is a reboot.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    I thought it was a good movie. Maybe not great but good enough. Better than the recent Total Recall definitely.

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    The political bits were rather ham-handed courtesy of Samuel Jackson, but maybe that was the point. I suppose they had to tie it to current affairs i.e drones. Maybe someone from the States would relate better to that. The "all-powerful megacorp" angle was downplayed, which is probably for the best.

    The process where Murphy responds to his transformation, and their attempts to further "roboticise" him were pretty good in my view. When they take him apart and there's practically nothing left...that was suitably creepy.

    Tying RoboCop to individuals living with prostheses was...interesting. It's nothing like any prosthesis technology that exists in the real world, but hey it's science fiction. And exploring how humans respond to technology is a big part of science fiction anyway.

    Personally I felt that after the Surrogates movie (whose ultimate message seemed terribly old-fashioned*), it was good to have a cyborg protagonist who isn't considered "less" because he is 90% machine. At the end of the movie he is reunited with his family and seemingly on the way to continuing his life as RoboCop. With the old-school RoboCop design no less.

    * I know that living via remote robot is not the same as being a cyborg, but the main point of Surrogates seemed to be that you're not really alive unless you're experiencing things with your natural 100% organic human body...ugh.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by Haruspex_Pariah View Post
    The "all-powerful megacorp" angle was downplayed, which is probably for the best.
    You can't maintain satire without changing things to remain topical. The traditional Cyber Punk Megacorp just isn't a relevant fear any more in the current economic climate.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Closet_Skeleton View Post
    You can't maintain satire without changing things to remain topical. The traditional Cyber Punk Megacorp just isn't a relevant fear any more in the current economic climate.
    Why is that? Is it no longer a relevant fear now because it's actually true, accepted, and taken for granted by the populace?
    "Oh, that's not political satire! That's just fact!"

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    This movie is Y. I watched both Robocop 1 and 2....Robocop 2014 didn't need to exist.

    You can describe the movie by describing the Robocop:

    1 is very tight and nearly perfect, with barely a chink in the perfect armor. Its human, yet bloody and filled with heart and conviction.

    2 is very powerful, and in some ways more powerful than 1, but it just doesn't come together as well. Its not as tight, and at its core its insane (For the good or the ill). Overall its pretty powerful on its own.

    3: Shlock with whatever was child friendly at the time. There is no robocop 3, so the Ninjas just count as them. AKA shlock.

    2014: Its sleeker, its more agile and sharp....but its just missing the point 90% of the time. Its just like any other action hero, lacking everything that made 1 very unique. Its attempts at being darker and edgier feel flatter and more "Topical". Wherein 1s design feels universal, 2014s design feels very much in "Now" but will be forgotten in a decade or so.

    Compare fighting styles: 1 is a tank. It moves slowly with a noticable PUMPH with every footstep. He takes careful aim and relies on his armor to protect him whilst he does so.

    2014 is doing slick action **** on wires and with bucket-loads of CGI just like everybody else.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by Closet_Skeleton View Post
    You can't maintain satire without changing things to remain topical. The traditional Cyber Punk Megacorp just isn't a relevant fear any more in the current economic climate.
    True, since people have accepted them as fact now, not because they are a scary future.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avilan the Grey View Post
    To me it's easy:
    Dredd etc is based in another media. Like Spider Man or Hulk. That's a reboot, when you disregard the previous movie and instead draw new inspiration from the source.

    A remake is when you redo something that is original. Like Robocop, or Predator or Finding Nemo.

    So Amazing Spider Man is a reboot.
    Why does it require a change in media to distinguish between reboot and remake? If they make a comic book Robocop series in the new Robocop world, its a reboot of an old comic series since both were originally based on a movie?

    Personally I always felt reboot was more the term to use when you're starting the story over but using the same "universe" (e.g., new Star Trek). Remakes just tend to make me feel like they're supposed to be far more closely related to the original with new actors new effects but effectively the same story (e.g., Peter Jackson's King Kong or The Departed).

    Now granted even using that logic I'm not really sure where I'd place this new Robocop. The villains motivation is completely different in this movie than in the original. However, there are still a lot of similarities as well between the two.

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    I just saw the movie, and I thought it was pretty good. I'd need to re-watch the original RoboCop to make a comparison between the two, although I note that the new one feels as much like Ghost in the Shell as what I remember of the original movie.

    If I was to make one big critique, it was that a lot of the decisions by the main company in the movie were quite, well, dumb. It's not even that the decisions were necessarily bad by themselves, but the reasoning for the decisions ended up considerably stupid. For example (spoilers, obviously):
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    They run Alex Murphy through a simulator, comparing RoboCop's reactions to that of one of their robots. The results are that the human reactions are not as precise and too cautious compared to the robot, and so are not "adequate." Why? The whole point of the RoboCop project is to get an OmniCorp model on U.S. streets to get people familiar with it and more accepting of it. What does it matter how poorly it performs compared to a robot?

    This is especially a problem when there is one good in-story reason for the change: high emotions cause problems with the brain-robotics interface, and cause it not to operate properly. Alex Murphy could have simply been experiencing trauma during the simulator, which would cause problems with his whole body. The end result - making the robot take over during combat situations - would've been the same, but for a sensible reason.

    Another point: why download the entire police database into his head just minutes before a nationwide press release? It makes no sense for a corporation to do something like that, especially when the entire company is so focused on that good first impression. Again, simply having the download perhaps a day beforehand - even earlier than that, given how emotional Alex is about it - would have worked, with them lowering his dopamine for the (unable to cancel) press conference and the same end result.


    Overall, I did like the character in RoboCop. What he went through was an interesting look at the whole man-machine idea, although with the political satire throughout. However, a lot of the company's decisions were just so stupid throughout the movie. And it wasn't a "I'm greedy and not thinking of consequences" stupidity. Rather, it's more "What sane person would decide that?" times of holding the idiot ball.
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    Default Re: Robocop remake

    Quote Originally Posted by erikun View Post
    Overall, I did like the character in RoboCop. What he went through was an interesting look at the whole man-machine idea, although with the political satire throughout. However, a lot of the company's decisions were just so stupid throughout the movie. And it wasn't a "I'm greedy and not thinking of consequences" stupidity. Rather, it's more "What sane person would decide that?" times of holding the idiot ball.
    I completely agree. The most aggravating thing is, as you pointed out, that the script only needed to be changed slightly so that the company does not seem to be making dumb decisions, but with the same scripted consequences to play out in the movie. They can still want to numb Murphy down, he can still have his breakdown episode, but without it all due to avoidable stupidity.

    My personal pet peeve on "unrealistically stupid decisions" would be the actions of the evil CEO at the end of the movie.
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    What pampered fat cat CEO would try to have a shootout with a cyborg cop bent on arresting him, at that stage of the game? Or aggravate him by pointing a gun at bystanders? That seems like unrealistic evil bravado just so the movie can have an excuse for a quick clean ending. Any real corrupt bastard CEO would simply capitulate at the first sign of real personal danger, and then let his crack cadre of elite lawyers have at the case. He'll get off with a wrist slap. Maybe OCP might let him go, or he might resign with crocodile tears, but it'll be with a golden parachute.

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    I've watched it yesterday and it was a good movie!
    I have to agree that the last part of the finale was underwhelming though, it felt a bit rushed and while it didn't ruin the movie, I was hoping for a more satisfying conclusion to the whole thing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MLai View Post
    I mean c'mon, some guy gets shot to bloody bits by a malfunctioning ED-209 in a corporate boardroom, and it doesn't matter and is never mentioned again? That's not realistic unless you put yourself into a comic book i.e. satirical mindset.
    You have a lot more faith in the basic decency of the real world than I do. That could totally happen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zrak View Post
    You have a lot more faith in the basic decency of the real world than I do. That could totally happen.
    Not true! The company would be fined a ridiculously tiny sum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by erikun View Post
    I just saw the movie, and I thought it was pretty good. I'd need to re-watch the original RoboCop to make a comparison between the two, although I note that the new one feels as much like Ghost in the Shell as what I remember of the original movie.

    If I was to make one big critique, it was that a lot of the decisions by the main company in the movie were quite, well, dumb. It's not even that the decisions were necessarily bad by themselves, but the reasoning for the decisions ended up considerably stupid. For example (spoilers, obviously):
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    They run Alex Murphy through a simulator, comparing RoboCop's reactions to that of one of their robots. The results are that the human reactions are not as precise and too cautious compared to the robot, and so are not "adequate." Why? The whole point of the RoboCop project is to get an OmniCorp model on U.S. streets to get people familiar with it and more accepting of it. What does it matter how poorly it performs compared to a robot?

    This is especially a problem when there is one good in-story reason for the change: high emotions cause problems with the brain-robotics interface, and cause it not to operate properly. Alex Murphy could have simply been experiencing trauma during the simulator, which would cause problems with his whole body. The end result - making the robot take over during combat situations - would've been the same, but for a sensible reason.

    Another point: why download the entire police database into his head just minutes before a nationwide press release? It makes no sense for a corporation to do something like that, especially when the entire company is so focused on that good first impression. Again, simply having the download perhaps a day beforehand - even earlier than that, given how emotional Alex is about it - would have worked, with them lowering his dopamine for the (unable to cancel) press conference and the same end result.


    Overall, I did like the character in RoboCop. What he went through was an interesting look at the whole man-machine idea, although with the political satire throughout. However, a lot of the company's decisions were just so stupid throughout the movie. And it wasn't a "I'm greedy and not thinking of consequences" stupidity. Rather, it's more "What sane person would decide that?" times of holding the idiot ball.
    I completely agree with you regarding the simulator comparison.

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    He's a PR stunt, not a tactical upgrade. They poured BILLIONS into making him. I don't care if he were 10x more efficient than a drone - he's nowhere near cost efficient.

    He doesn't HAVE to be better, or even equal, to the drones. Heck, he doesn't even have to be that much better than a normal human.

    All he has to do is show the public a human cyborg so they would actually accept the full robots that could me mass-produced at much more reasonable cost.

    Which brings me to the 2nd unbelievably stupid decision - trying to kill him.

    They already got exactly what they wanted - robots on US soil legal.

    Seriously, how dumb are these people? They already had the perfect excuse to decommission him. He nearly executed the chief of police (regardless of corruption, she was absolutely no threat at the time).

    Announce something along the lines of, "While he was very successful, unfortunately, the synthesis of man and machine have caused very serious mental problems. It is with great regret that we have to remove Alex Murphy from the active police force."

    Remove him from the police force, pay him off, and give him back to his family. Problem solved.
    Last edited by Olinser; 2014-02-16 at 01:46 PM.

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