It seems like I’m writing about another sci-fi movie reboot at least once a week, and this week is no different as Hollywood has announced plans to reboot "Robocop," one of the coolest, yet most gratuitously gory genre movies of all time.
The original "Robocop" is the reason I started listening to my father.
I actually don’t remember all that much about "Robocop," but that’s because I was hiding my eyes throughout almost the entire movie. I was a young lad of 7 years when the original Robocop came out, almost 25 years ago.
My father warned me about the movie, as he had seen it in the theatre with his friends soon after its release.
One of my buddies, whose house I spent a lot of time at, had picked up the movie on VHS from the video rental store, of which my town only had one.
My buddy had called me up to see if I wanted to come over and watch it. I asked my father, and he told me that I was not allowed to watch "RoboCop."
"It’s too scary," he said. "It’ll give you nightmares."
He made me promise that if I went over there, I wouldn't watch the movie, and when I made the promise, I meant it, but of course, once I got there, the movie was pushed in, and I made no protest.
To that point in my life, I had never seen any really bloody special effects, and I remember a particularly gruesome scene, near the beginning of the movie, in which one of the OCP executives is gunned down by an experimental police robot prototype.
As an adult watching the scene again, it really isn't all that bad, especially by modern movie violence standards.
In my dreams, however, it was much worse, as the man is gunned through the plate-glass window behind him, his rib-cage flapping up against his face, as his chest explodes with bullets. His lifeless body falls dozens of stories to the street below, creating a horrible Tableau of gore against the pavement.
My father was right. It had given me nightmares. I never told my father that I had broken my promise. I suffered through the nightmares alone, and occasionally they still get to me. From then on, I actually listened when my father told me not to watch something.
I for one could do with a new version of RoboCop, but what will it be like?
With the current movie trends, the studio will likely want something rather dark. Of course RoboCop is already rather dark in tone and theme, but they will also want a visually dark and brooding pic, with likely less humor than the original.
Some of the technobabble will have to be updated for modern sensibilities, and RoboCop’s costume will likely change quite a bit (a fact that Detroit should pay attention to, as they recently commissioned a statue to the fictional hero).
Otherwise, not much needs to change. We can all still believe that in just a few years, Detroit will be a criminal-run wasteland, if there is anything left to run by then, and that city officials might plan to demolish it in favor of a greater, prettier city plan.