Entertainment Weekly

Subscribe

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content

Article

RoboCop

Posted on

PEW PEW PEW! This remake is a poor generic retelling of a cult favorite.
Kerry Hayes

RoboCop

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
Unrated
runtime:
103 minutes
performer:
Nancy Allen, Peter Weller, Paul McCrane
director:
Paul Verhoeven
distributor:
MGM/UA Home Video
genre:
ActionAdventure

We gave it a B-

Why do a remake of RoboCop that’s only half as good? The crackerjack satirical future-shock classic of 1987 centered on a hero who was hauntingly poised between being a Terminator cyborg and a soulful shard of his former human self. He was a real ghost in the machine. In the new RoboCop, Joel Kinnaman, cast because he’s as naturally steely as Peter Weller, sometimes plays RoboCop as the thinking, feeling family man he once was, and sometimes he’s pure shoot-’em-up droid crime fighter — which can feel like the film trying to have it both ways. After Kinnaman’s Alex Murphy is nearly killed by thugs, he’s built into RoboCop as a marketing ploy: The CEO of OmniCorp (Michael Keaton) wants to sell robot law enforcers to the American people. The film has lots of energized mayhem, and Murphy’s unraveling of the conspiracy against him isn’t dumbed down, yet it’s as if the comic-book action poetry of the original has been encased in a suit of generic armor. B-