In this remake of the Paul Verhoeven classic, we are taken to Detroit in the year 2028. Multinational OmniCorp is making tons of money by building drones but they are missing out on their biggest market, the US, thanks to a law that forbids the use of drones on US soil.
In comes officer Alex Murphy, or at least what’s left of him after a very inconvenient car explosion.OmniCorp patches him up real good and there you go… the first half human/holf robot police officer is a fact.
If you haven’t seen the 1987 original, please do… it may look like a dumb action flick but it’s actually pretty smart with plenty of satiric comments on American culture along with Verhoeven’s usual flair. Kinda like Showgirls but with more shootouts and less boobs. Director José Padilha (Trope de Elite) is doing his best to maintain the satire but updated it a little. Admirable, but it ultimately falls short. Samuel L. Jackson for example is pretty good in his role as a talk show host that belongs on Fox but his scenes don’t add anything to the movie and could have just as easily been left out.
But the biggest problem with this remake is that the plot is too basic and the characters look like they are made out of cardboard. Joel Kinnaman (from AMC’s The Killing) takes over Robocop’s suit from Peter Weller and does a good enough job as he struggles to maintain his humanity but it’s hardly the most compelling character we’ve seen in a movie.
What’s left is an okay-ish movie with some frenetically shot action sequences that are pretty good and a solid supporting cast by Jackson, Michael Keaton, Gary Oldman and Abbie cornish. But once the movie is over, you’ll be hard-pressed to remember much.