RoboCop (1987) starring Peter Weller, Nancy Allen, Dan O'Herlihy, Ronny Cox, Kurtwood Smith, Miguel Ferrer directed by Paul Verhoeven Movie Review

RoboCop (1987)   4/54/54/54/54/5

Peter Weller in RoboCop (1987)

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There are many like myself who think that "RoboCop" is one of the greatest movies to come out of the 80s, which makes you wonder why anyone in their right mind would want to remake it. But in truth I never always felt that way about "RoboCop", whilst I have always enjoyed the movie for a while I thought it was an intentionally corny action movie which revelled in blood violence. But with age this movie gets better and better with more to it than just bloody violence but some great social satire as well.

Sometime in the future the Detroit Police department is run by OCP (Omni Consumer Products) much to the annoyance of the men and women on the beat. But the old man who runs OCP has bigger plans involving Detroit and the police department including robot police. When a proto-type robot cop malfunctions killing an innocent man Bob Morton (Miguel Ferrer) steps in with his plans to use the bodies of elite cops killed in the line of duty as the basis for his RoboCops. When newly transferred cop Alex J. Murphy (Peter Weller) meets a bloody death at the hands of the evil Boddicker (Kurtwood Smith) and his henchmen he is the perfect subject to be turned into the first RoboCop. But the future of policing is big business and skulduggery is afoot.

Nancy Allen in RoboCop (1987)

To be honest "RoboCop" doesn't need an in-depth review because the movie is one which works through experience and it is hard to get across the fun and cleverness of the movie in words. But to try there is the clever social satire side where we have a future where privatization has lead to the police being run by a company with big money making ideas. Throw on top of that plenty of other satire from a future where heart operations are advertised on TV where you can pick the make of artificial heart to a humorous scene of a mayor having lost an election holding the new mayor hostage and wanting his old job back no matter what. Basically "RoboCop" is a movie which is lush in humour and cleverness as it satirizes the future.

But running alongside this there is also the action and like so many 80s action movies "RoboCop" is bloody and violent. The scene where Murphy ends up being murdered by Boddicker and his henchmen is gory and blood thirsty as first his hand is blown off, then he is shot to pieces before a bullet is put through his head. The entire movie has more of this and the goriness of the action is often tied in to some humour none more so when RoboCop saves a woman from being attacked by shooting between her legs.

Now there is no denying that "RoboCop" is now dated, the banks of computers used to support RoboCop are hilariously old fashioned and the whole series of scenes featuring the malfunctioning robot cop now is tacky. Yet to be honest I wouldn't change a thing as the corniness of the stop motion work adds something to it. As does the acting, the outfits and all those corny elements so typical of the 80s such as a scene involving nudity for no apparent reason which to new audiences probably make it seem incredibly cheesy.

What this all boils down to is that "RoboCop" is one of the greatest movies from the 80s and is even better now than it was when it was first released. Maybe the remake will be as good for modern audiences who might find this corny but for me the 1987 "RoboCop" is a hard movie to top.