run time: 117 mins
considered: Action, Crime, Sci-Fi
starring: Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Michael Keaton, Abbie Cornish, Jackie Earle Haley, Michael K. Williams, Jennifer Ehle, Jay Baruchel, Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Samuel L. Jackson, John Paul Ruttan
movie summary: Raymond Sellars (Michael Keaton) is the CEO of the world’s most renowned robot company OmniCorp which provides robots to the US military to help perform peace keeping and war missions overseas. The American public is very supportive of these unmanned robots helping soldiers perform life threatening missions, but the political powers in the US government have voted against these type of robots patrolling the streets of American cities.
OmniCorp’s head offices are located in Detroit which is now the worst city in the country for crime. Most of the police force is corrupt so that leaves only a handful of decent cops out on the streets, one of them is Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman) and his partner Jack Lewis (Michael K. Williams). When the duo try to bust the city’s biggest crime lord Antonie Vallon (Patrick Garrow), he turns the tides on the cops by gunning down Jack and planting a bomb in Alex’s car. Jack is hospitalized with non life threatening injuries while Alex is found dead by his wife Clara (Abbie Cornish). She agrees to meet with OmniCorp’s leading doctor Dennett Norton (Gary Oldman) who offers to save Alex if he is given the opportunity to use his body inside OmniCorp’s first ever manned robot. Sellars is overly excited with Clara’s consent to use Alex’s body because with the world’s first manned robot, the politicians may change their views and want OmniCorp robots on American streets.
Alex’s body is shipped to China where Dr. Norton is about to salvage bits and pieces and fit them into the structure of his new robot suit. Months go by before Clara gets to see Alex who has been in a coma, once he is awaken he has a hard time adjusting to his new situation both mentally and physically so Sellars orders a shut down and reprogramming. After receiving a software update with a new personality and attitude, Alex is sent back to Detroit where he sets out to ignore his wife and family and focuses on cleaning up the streets.
Sellars and Norton’s update is working perfectly until Alex comes across his own unsolved murder. He begins to override the software with his own personal feelings and begins to break away from his programmed duties and track down Vallon. Sellars demands that Alex be shut down and killed when he decides to go rogue while the Detroit police force are now on a man hunt to find him. Thanks to help from his former partner Jack, Alex is able to find Vallon and kill him. During this battle he gets shot up pretty heavily and loses some of his body parts. He gets word that Sellars has kidnapped Clara and his son at OmniCorp headquarters, so Alex limps downtown where Sellars is waiting for a helicopter ride out-of-town with his hostages.
my thoughts: About a year and half ago I watched all three original Robocop movies on Netflix and was amazed at how bad the series got with each new movie. In 2014 the attempted reboot of the original Robocop was just another poor movie in the storied franchise just like the previous two from the 1990’s. This version has a completely different back story, injury story, and a really gross robotic story. The writers for Robocop took modern technologically and pushed the envelope in terms of the human/robot line when you see Alex without his suit. There’s not a lot of action in this movie, instead the focus of this story is on Alex becoming Robocop, how he deals with the unrealistic situation, and the drama that is involved with corrupt police officers, politicians, and company CEOs. Abbie Cornish is a very vital cog to the story this time around because it’s her decision that saves Alex’s life, when at the end of the day she was just used for power and greed to further the career of Keaton’s and Oldman’s characters. Only after he realizes what he created is still a living human being does Oldman’s doctor character changed his mind about Alex and tries to save him.
I honestly don’t know why Robocop needed a remake, reimaging, or updated version when the original is a classic. People will flock to see this one which some will enjoy or be upset about how far the franchise has fallen since 1987. I didn’t really care for this movie and wouldn’t see it again.
my star rating: 3 out 10