Monday, February 3, 2014

"RoboCop (1987)" LATE MOVIE REVIEW

The Review

As a kid, RoboCop was one of those movies my parents forbid for me to see till I was at my mid-teens. This movie has almost everything, the grit, the violence, the universal theme, and it's an 80's sci-fi film, which happens to be a really good one.

The one aspect who deserves the biggest share of the cake-of-praise is none other than RoboCop himself, played by Peter Weller. Before he was the RoboCop, he was the very likable and badass Officer Alex Murphy. He maybe seem average to some, he doesn't have that Han Solo charisma and looks, which makes his character more believable. He just happens to be really good at what he does, regardless of his appearance. Until he was gunned down, has a chunk of his head exploded, has his limbs removed and most of his body tissue replaced with robotic prosthetic and an on-board computer for a brain. Giving us the spectacular, action-packed, ass-kicking, living-action figure, Daft Punk's inspiration, Kristen Stewart's robo-grand dad, RoboCop. This gun slinging mechanical officer goes full brawn against every villain in the movie, complete with slow-robot movements and cheesy 80's one liners. Peter Weller has perfectly portrayed this two characters, making them completely different from one another. One is a fun character, the other is completely emotionless, lifeless, just like a robot. My only real gripe about this character is that they never really got the chance to explore more of Alex's human side. Flashbacks is the closest we can get to see his life as a father to a happy son and husband to a loving wife, that once was all his. 

Now it's hard to look beyond the story without being distracted with all of the over-the-top violence, the vulgarity, drugs, and a few sexual references. But it's themes of corruption, social displacement, authoritarianism and the heavy usage of the media (even going as far as featuring fictional TV commercials) makes these universe a plausible dystopian future for us as well. Of course, this movie has villains and other characters you'd expect from an 80's R-rated movie. With a small budget, they have also made some pretty special effects and flawless production designs of that time. Sure they look cheesy now but they are impressive.

Final Verdict

Just because this is the first part of a franchise that sells comics and toys, doesn't mean you should let 8 year-old kids see this movie. If you're the type of person who likes peace and prosperity, the fast-paced action and the in-your-face violence might pull you out of the movie altogether. But that is an integral part of the experience. To love this movie is to love the graphic violence. Plus, it has a pretty solid story backing it up. The action is front and center, and you might have to see the movie twice to fully understand the story. But this is one of those movies that grows into you the more you see it. RoboCop definitely earned its place as a classic.

And NO, I am not going to review the sequels, let's just pretend they never happened. 

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