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It's the Booze Talkin': Robocop remake trailer! I am not buying that for a dollar!

Sep. 9, 2013by: JimmyO

Like it or not, in this day and age remakes have become the norm in Hollywood. When we look back at movies that inspired, entertained and provoked some serious discussion you can guarantee that some studio somewhere has set their sights on bringing it back for a modern audience. Nearly every single day we are hearing about another classic with a fresh coat of paint and some groovy new effects. And recently, we got the first glimpse at ROBOCOP 2014 starring Joel Kinnaman (TV’s “The Killing”) as Alex Murphy, the police officer turned into a crime fighting machine. As much as I would love to embrace this stylish looking flick with a ton of A-list talent, I have to say that I might not buy that for a dollar.

In the new trailer for ROBOCOP 2014, we see the very likable Kinnaman as Murphy, a cop, husband and father and he sure seems like a great guy. Soon however, he opens his car door and BOOM… the dude is toast. Unlike the original film, our hero is critically injured with forth degree burns over eighty percent of his body after the attack as opposed to dead. Needless to say he is f*cked either way. Next thing you know Michael Keaton’s company has this injured police officer all decked out as ROBOCOP with a decent new look. That is until Keaton’s character wants to give him an upgrade and make him look, “… tactical… let’s go with black.” And then we see Alex Murphy as the man in black, and it’s pretty damn boring.

It’s not that the trailer is necessarily the worst thing I’ve seen. There is nothing really terrible – aside from the suit upgrade – yet it feels like simply a glossy looking superhero movie. The cast is beyond impressive with the previously mentioned Kinnaman and Keaton. Add to that a slew of grade-A talent including Samuel L. Jackson, Gary Oldman, Jay Baruchel, Jackie Earle Haley and Abbie Cornish. Yet after re-watching this first trailer a handful of times there is nothing all that compelling about it either. In the current version, KinnamanCop is dealing with his wife and child and he is still very “humanistic” in the suit. The deal this time around is that his responses have been programmed and it looks like the man still missing his family is trying to override his programming and get a glimpse of who the real bad guys are. This isn’t all that far removed from the original film necessarily.

The thing is, ROBOCOP worked when it wasn’t sleek and stylish. It was gritty, dark, funny and violent with a purpose. When Peter Weller’s Alex Murphy is brutally killed by Clarence Boddicker (Kurtwood Smith) and his gang, it is arguably one of the most vicious on-screen kills ever. Murphy is freaking dead! These guys destroy this poor cop by blowing off his limbs and letting him feel each and every second of torturous pain as the bullets ripe him apart. His Frankenstein-esque awakening is especially chilling as he sees everything as one would through a video monitor. Weller truly becomes a machine with his face stretched out to hold some mechanical brain with only a few lingering memories. It is a disturbing image when he removes his helmet and tells his partner, Officer Anne Lewis (Nancy Allen) that she may not like what she is going to see. From the looks of it in the update, they did some decent facial reconstruction for the guy because Kinnaman looks a whole lot better.

Even when a low on the totem pole employee at Security Concepts OCP is taken out in the original film, it is with such ruthless force this this flick would most assuredly earn a hard-R rating by even today’s standards. When Kinney (Kevin Page) gets to play pretend bad guy with the companies brand spanking new toy, the ED 209, it is one hell of a ferocious scene. After a serious malfunction, the damn robot goes haywire and literally pumps the poor guy full of ammo in the middle of a conference room with horrified witnesses. It is all the more disturbing when his co-worker Bob Morton (Miguel Ferrer who is also featured in the remake) treats his untimely death as just another day in the office. From the new trailer, I have doubt that there will be a single more intense moment that even remotely compares.

What is it that made the classic Sci-Fi flick work so well in the first place? Simply put, it was a smart satirical look at a violent and twisted version of Detroit. The use of T.V. commercials and shows featuring a really creepy guy wearing glasses or a very modern (and pretty freaky) board game where you can blow up your family with a missile strike was brilliant. The use of news reports and the violent footage of the savage criminal side of Detroit gave ROBOCOP an edge that is near forgotten in modern cinema. Director Paul Verhoeven and screenwriters Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner had a whole lot to say in what is essentially a revenge story with a heavy dose of biting satire.

Maybe it’s the booze talkin’, but from the trailer, this new and improved ROBOCOP movie is simply new and in no way improved. With a February release date in 2014 and its all-star cast, this looks to lack much of what made the original great. Verhoeven’s classic was a smartly crafted examination of a violent society gone wrong. It featured an incredible cast of B-movie actors and it was an R-rated flick even by today’s standards. I can’t help but thinking somehow the new film will even have a happy ending where ROBOCOP can somehow reconnect with his family and all will be well again. This is the first trailer so I’ll be reserving final judgment until I can actually see what director Jose Padilha has in store. Perhaps it will be better than the two ROBOCOP sequels or at least be escapist fun, but thus far I’d rather re-visit the original in all its gutsy glory. That I’d buy for a dollar!
Extra Tidbit: What do you think of the new RoboCop trailer?

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+3
5:55AM on 09/10/2013

I agree

this movie wont get more that a rental from me. The cop still seems more like a man in a suit. wish this movie got a R rating. but at least we get to see some ed209 looking machines
this movie wont get more that a rental from me. The cop still seems more like a man in a suit. wish this movie got a R rating. but at least we get to see some ed209 looking machines
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4:55AM on 09/10/2013

Definetely not the booze talking

I agree 100% with this article so I don't need to add anything; I am just going to say that i was actually pleasantly surprised initially by the trailer when I saw the silver Robocop Armour that actually could pass as Robot/Cyborg (even though the original seems incomparably better and more genuine after all these years, no contest) but then they changed it to black and... voilá...the "guy-in-a-suit" look! I won't bash the remake any further because I still have the original to rewatch every
I agree 100% with this article so I don't need to add anything; I am just going to say that i was actually pleasantly surprised initially by the trailer when I saw the silver Robocop Armour that actually could pass as Robot/Cyborg (even though the original seems incomparably better and more genuine after all these years, no contest) but then they changed it to black and... voilá...the "guy-in-a-suit" look! I won't bash the remake any further because I still have the original to rewatch every time I want; it's one of my all time favorite movies.
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5:36PM on 09/09/2013

Its the booze talking alright

I loved the trailer, im actually looking forward to the resurrection of this cool character...been waiting for years to see Robocops return and we have an all star cast a good production and a decent director....I am pumped. Sure its not Veerhoven, Weller...but I say lets give these new guys a chance, lets see how they can surprise us before passing judgement on the basis of a trailer which by the way looked great in my book. The old Robocop is what it is because of the creatuve team behind and
I loved the trailer, im actually looking forward to the resurrection of this cool character...been waiting for years to see Robocops return and we have an all star cast a good production and a decent director....I am pumped. Sure its not Veerhoven, Weller...but I say lets give these new guys a chance, lets see how they can surprise us before passing judgement on the basis of a trailer which by the way looked great in my book. The old Robocop is what it is because of the creatuve team behind and it will always be there...but this is another take on it an evolution..lets see what Padihla and crew came up with before shooting it down before its even released.
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4:39PM on 09/09/2013

guess the suit has to be balck...

... black is the natural police state color
... black is the natural police state color
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+2
1:35PM on 09/09/2013
I've heard they are going to remake this one too, in 2016. Actually it's gonna be a sequel: Verhoeven's Robocop Vs Padilha's Robocop. And in the near future Robo's gonna go against the T-1000. So , yeah I am going to wait for those two movies.
I've heard they are going to remake this one too, in 2016. Actually it's gonna be a sequel: Verhoeven's Robocop Vs Padilha's Robocop. And in the near future Robo's gonna go against the T-1000. So , yeah I am going to wait for those two movies.
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1:12PM on 09/09/2013
The trailer was a lot better than I had expected it to be. When I saw the 1st still of Kinnaman in the black suit with his right hand intact, I sold the idea of this flick & I sold it hard. The trailer has made me think that while I may dislike it for where it varies from the original, it still may be fun to watch as it's own entity. I'm positive that it'll be better than part 2 or 3, but in my eyes the original still holds up today. I mean, it looks awesome on BluRay. It transfered really
The trailer was a lot better than I had expected it to be. When I saw the 1st still of Kinnaman in the black suit with his right hand intact, I sold the idea of this flick & I sold it hard. The trailer has made me think that while I may dislike it for where it varies from the original, it still may be fun to watch as it's own entity. I'm positive that it'll be better than part 2 or 3, but in my eyes the original still holds up today. I mean, it looks awesome on BluRay. It transfered really well. For now I'm hopeful that the remake will be above douche bag level & at least put a small smile on my face, but I really want to see more as the release date approaches.
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1:10PM on 09/09/2013
The trailer was a lot better than I had expected it to be. When I saw the 1st still of Kinnaman in the black suit with his right hand intact, I sold the idea of this flick & I sold it hard. The trailer has made me think that while I may dislike it for where it varies from the original, it still may be fun to watch as it's own entity. I'm positive that it'll be better than part 2 or 3, but in my eyes the original still holds up today. I mean, it looks awesome on BluRay. It transfered really
The trailer was a lot better than I had expected it to be. When I saw the 1st still of Kinnaman in the black suit with his right hand intact, I sold the idea of this flick & I sold it hard. The trailer has made me think that while I may dislike it for where it varies from the original, it still may be fun to watch as it's own entity. I'm positive that it'll be better than part 2 or 3, but in my eyes the original still holds up today. I mean, it looks awesome on BluRay. It transfered really well. For now I'm hopeful that the remake will be above douche bag level & at least put a small smile on my face, but I really want to see more as the release date approaches.
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12:59PM on 09/09/2013
I'm already looking forward to the PG-13 'Death Wish' remake, in which Paul Kersey becomes a ruthless, death-dealing vigilante after some guy gives his wife a funny look.
I'm already looking forward to the PG-13 'Death Wish' remake, in which Paul Kersey becomes a ruthless, death-dealing vigilante after some guy gives his wife a funny look.
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12:59PM on 09/09/2013

Bland and soulless

I didn't see anything bad or good in the trailer. Much like the Total Recall remake this is going to be a bland and soulless remake.
Total Recall wasn't a "bad" movie but lacking Mars and mutants made it a shadow of the original. Then throwing in a lady with three boobs just seemed totally out of place. In the end it was just a so-so sci-fi flick. Same thing here, I'm not saying it will be a "bad" movie. My complaints about the suit aside, this just doesn't look like it will have the same
I didn't see anything bad or good in the trailer. Much like the Total Recall remake this is going to be a bland and soulless remake.
Total Recall wasn't a "bad" movie but lacking Mars and mutants made it a shadow of the original. Then throwing in a lady with three boobs just seemed totally out of place. In the end it was just a so-so sci-fi flick. Same thing here, I'm not saying it will be a "bad" movie. My complaints about the suit aside, this just doesn't look like it will have the same impact as the original. The satirical level of violence that made the original stand out will be gone and this will just be a popcorn action movie about a robot cop. I'm hoping they prove me wrong.
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+6
12:00PM on 09/09/2013
Not so sure to judge it by the looks alone. What I mean is that I thought that DREDD was a terrible idea and just by the helmet alone, it looked bad... but then the joke was on me! IT ROCKED!

Going ahead with the "it´s just another remake" I believe is the best attitude, because if so.. nothing gained, nothing lost. But if it turns out to the good, then the element of surprise is far greater than any negative expectation.

Neutral for now..
Not so sure to judge it by the looks alone. What I mean is that I thought that DREDD was a terrible idea and just by the helmet alone, it looked bad... but then the joke was on me! IT ROCKED!

Going ahead with the "it´s just another remake" I believe is the best attitude, because if so.. nothing gained, nothing lost. But if it turns out to the good, then the element of surprise is far greater than any negative expectation.

Neutral for now..
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11:49AM on 09/09/2013
I had a similar reaction when I watched the trailer. To be fair, neither a PG-13 rating, nor making large changes to the story as a whole are necessarily going to make me automatically write this off. But I don't want it to just be him trying to get back with his family. One of the important things about RoboCop was that, in the end, he actually worked. He had that human spark, but he didn't rebel against his protocol. One of the things that makes RoboCop work today as a movie, is the satirical
I had a similar reaction when I watched the trailer. To be fair, neither a PG-13 rating, nor making large changes to the story as a whole are necessarily going to make me automatically write this off. But I don't want it to just be him trying to get back with his family. One of the important things about RoboCop was that, in the end, he actually worked. He had that human spark, but he didn't rebel against his protocol. One of the things that makes RoboCop work today as a movie, is the satirical elements still feel relevant (I want some updated references to predator drones in this one though, because you know Security Concepts OCP makes those things).
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11:37AM on 09/09/2013
The new trailer took me by surprise and it looks better than I thought. The thing that disappoints me most is RoboCop's helmet. The new one looks like it will be on and off automatically or at Murphy's will. I really like the original helmet where Murphy removes it and we see wires and stitches all over his face - a perfect blend of man and machine that gives Murphy a sense of himself as ghost in the machine. If only the new version could do that, it'd be great.
The new trailer took me by surprise and it looks better than I thought. The thing that disappoints me most is RoboCop's helmet. The new one looks like it will be on and off automatically or at Murphy's will. I really like the original helmet where Murphy removes it and we see wires and stitches all over his face - a perfect blend of man and machine that gives Murphy a sense of himself as ghost in the machine. If only the new version could do that, it'd be great.
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9:58AM on 09/09/2013
Good for you Jimmy!! Save that dollar and put it towards something more worthwhile, like more beer! Why mess with perfection? You make great points on why this remake will disappoint like the rest of them,
Good for you Jimmy!! Save that dollar and put it towards something more worthwhile, like more beer! Why mess with perfection? You make great points on why this remake will disappoint like the rest of them,
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8:13AM on 09/09/2013

I'm buying it!

I'm happy that the RoboCop remake is going for a different vibe than the 1987 classic and that it has different story elements. Verhoeven's RoboCop is untouchable in my book, so to go toe to toe with it (The Omen style) would be inane - you can't match or top it playing its game, so play your own. Smart move IMO!. Also; as a film-goer, I am glad that I won't be seeing the EXACT same film all over again. I have seen the original RoboCop a billion times, so I welcome the new ingredients.

So
I'm happy that the RoboCop remake is going for a different vibe than the 1987 classic and that it has different story elements. Verhoeven's RoboCop is untouchable in my book, so to go toe to toe with it (The Omen style) would be inane - you can't match or top it playing its game, so play your own. Smart move IMO!. Also; as a film-goer, I am glad that I won't be seeing the EXACT same film all over again. I have seen the original RoboCop a billion times, so I welcome the new ingredients.

So yup, after the trailer, I have more of an open mind. It looks like fun times to me! It has a great cast and director José Padilha ain't no chump. Them Elite Squad movies were the tits! I don't expect Verhoeven's movie all over again, which is fine, I own it and can watch it whenever I want, I expect a different and entertaining romp though! We'll see...
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+9
7:31AM on 09/09/2013
Great article and just judging from the trailer the glossy remake seems to lack heart, brains and balls.
Great article and just judging from the trailer the glossy remake seems to lack heart, brains and balls.
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