Movie Review: Robocop (2014)

I can’t remember the first time I watched the original Robocop but I fondly remember watching it and being amazed. Like a ton of 80s film, Robocop had a crazed premise that somehow worked for the time and yet some 30 years later the idea doesn’t seem as crazed as it once did which perhaps makes the remake a lot more interesting than the original. I’m not a fan of remakes but I don’t oppose them if they are done for a logical reason. Robocop although a great fun movies wasn’t a masterpiece and now with how much movies have evolved almost seems as a no brainer. Robocop 2014 is probably not as fun as the original but it still packs a punch.

The remake pretty much stick close to the originals plot. Police officer Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman) is a goof cop, good husband and a good dad who happens to uncover weapons seized by the local police department being sold on the streets. He along with his partner Jack Lewis (Michael K. Williams) decide to take matters into their own hands. This quickly leads to his world being turned upside down when a bomb is planted in his car and he is blown up. He wakes up to his new body a few months later distraught by it all but after a few days of thinking about he decides to give it his all and embrace his new identity as Robocop

Robocop for the most part is a good movie but I can’t help but feel let down by it mainly because of the misuse of Kinnaman. Kinnaman is an amazing actor, evidence by his work on the underrated TV show the Killing. He has shown to portray great emotion through his facial expression and some of that is shown off in his early scenes as Robocop but for most of the movie his is numb and emotionless which I felt was a mistake. Another misuse was the use of Williams who is another amazing actor who appeared on probably the greatest TV show of all time, the Wire. He barley gets any screen time and his character is of no value at all. If his scenes where cut from the final cut it wouldn’t make much of a difference to the overall film.

The action is well done with the final action sequence being exceptional if not overdone and typical. The plot that came before it was pretty much the same as the original but that’s not a bad thing. It hit the right notes at the right time and never let anything drag. The only time I found myself out of places was when Samuel L. Jackson was on screen. This might be because I am not a fan of his but all of his scenes seemed pointless to me and everything that came across from it could have been done differently. His last scene especially was jarring as it felt completely out of place and didn’t fit with the character he had somewhat established beforehand. It was almost as if he broke out of character just for the sake of being Jackson.

A new look
A new look

My only other grip with the film was that I don’t think the suit needed to be changed the original design and color pallet is iconic and the revamped version that they showed was well designed so I don’t know why they chose to go with the all black look as it reminded me less of Robocop and more of Grey Fox from the Metal Gear Solid video games only black.

Robocop can call itself successful as it tried new ideas while staying loyal to the original. It didn’t break any new grounds and wasn’t as compact as it could have been but the overall film is an enjoyable thrill ride that should leave most fans of action films delighted. Overall I rate Robocop, 3 out of 5.

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