We are all screwed… well, if you live in Detroit you are. I saw Robocop in the theaters as a 10-year-old kid and watched adults leave in disgust and shock while a married couple argued because she wanted to leave and he didn’t by the film’s halfway point. Awesome! As an adult, I’ve come to see the lines that separate genres of film internally. Sci-Fi is vast, many of the stories being in the future (Star Trek/Bladerunner) or futuristic (Star Wars/Last Starfighter)… then there is the ‘UltraViolent’ segment (see Clockwork Orange/Mad Max). RoboCop blurred the lines between most if just slightly.
Easily one of Verhoven’s best works this film was a huge surprise hit. Not starring anyone in particular but great turns by Weller and Kurtwood Smith it hit home like a grenade you stare at but are too afraid to run from before it kills you. The film, laced with social messages and glaring examples of yesterday’s, today’s and what were in deed tomorrow’s problems did so with gusto and humor while giving you an example of Frankenstein’s wet dream in modern technology. Upfront, in your face and riding the wave of Reaganomics, escalating drugs and domestic urban violence the film slaps you with all the sad truths of society with a slightly angry but honest view.
If you can see the unrated version, do so. After all, does some extra bullets and blood and guts and brain matter really get offensive at this point? Not just a violent disturbing Sci-Fi film, one of the most surprising social conscience films you’ll find.
Sci-Fi epic… no bathroom breaks!