What?! RoboCop is back, Jack! And ready to attack the smack that’s taking over the streets. That’s right! There’s a new drug in town, Nuke, and while the (non-cyborg) police are on strike, no one’s there to stop its rise. OmniCorps aims to use the crisis to launch Delta City with a updated version of RoboCop to patrol the streets. Just hope RoboCop 2 isn’t some insane cyborg killing machine (hint: he is). RoboCop 2!
Why?! The entire aim of the film is for OmniCorp to gain control of Detroit and built Delta City. It’s funny because that’s basically the motivation of all the RoboCop films. They can’t seem to get the goddamned city built. RoboCop’s motivation is the same as well: Kick ass. Take names. Not necessarily in that order.
How?! In the original RoboCop OmmiCorp signed a contract with Detroit to take over the police department and privatize it. Turns out that contract had a clause whereby OminCorp could foreclose on the entire city if it defaulted on the contract. Uh oh! So OmniCorp’s entire plan is to undermine Detroit’s credit, wait for the city to default, stop paying the cops, allow crime to run rampant while they’re on strike, and call it a loss to justify knocking it all down to build Delta City. And the plan would have worked too if it wasn’t for that damned RoboCop. Seriously. They needed more RoboCops to patrol the streets of their shiny new city but couldn’t figure out the secret sauce that made the first one work so well. This time around they try using a newly captured Nuke kingpin as the brain for the robot and feeding his addiction as a means of control. Not a great idea as it goes beserk at the sight of Nuke and RoboCop has to save everyone (obvs). Unfortunately, they decided not to write in how RoboCop beating up a robot in any way solves the city’s financial crisis. We can only presume OmniCorp still ended up owning the city after everyone stopped high fiving and the credits rolled.
Who?! No true Planchet here, but I want to give a shout out to Belinda Bauer, an Australian actress with an unknowable accent. I really couldn’t tell if she was supposed to be American in this film or what. It was one of the worst (read: best) accents we’ve had in a while. Also Willard E. Pugh consumed any and all scenery as the bonkers Mayor of Detroit. Enjoy:
Where?! Detroit, duh. It’s fucking RoboCop. There’s a reason the city is going to have a statue dedicated to him (if the artist ever finishes making it). It’s really the only thing they didn’t mess up with the sequels and remake. In this world there is nothing that can be said to be certain, except death, taxes, and RoboCop being set in Detroit. A-.
When?! According to the writer it is set in the “near future” but there is a clear January 1986 calendar in the precinct. There is some evidence presented online about it being set in 2044, but it’s from the book so noncanonical. I prefer the calendar. The month being January also lines up with the fact that the scientists are seen celebrating New Years in the three month span during which RoboCop is built. Why bring up the first film? Because at the Delta City presentation at the end of the second film the president of OCP says that “about a year ago we gave you RoboCop.” From that perspective we can presume that it’s either late 1986 or early 1987. Not incredibly specific but we got something. C-.
‘Ello everyone! RoboCop 2? More like RoboSlop! Boo! (ohhhhh yeah). We watched the sequel to one of my favorite movies (with some of the best practical effects in the biz), could it hold up to such praise? Nope! Let’s get into it!
- The Good – Their hearts are in the right place. They tried to make a good follow up. To an extent the story is solid, and it does an okay job of taking a new subject (drugs) and running with it. And the practical effects seem pretty okay.
- The Bad – The villains are not good enough to carry what is a ludicrous story. In the first the villains are just bad people. They fill that supervillain mold from Cobra but also in an interesting manner (with Kurtwood Smith looking as natural in a suit in OmniCorp headquarters as in a trenchcoat blowing Peter Weller’s hand off). In the second, Cain is just kind of a weirdo. They had an interesting villain (Gabriel Damon) in a pre-teen psycho, but waste him in an overly sentimental and brief stint at the top. The entire middle makes you wonder “what is the point?” after much is made of rewriting RoboCop’s directives, only to have him reverse the damage in a matter of seconds.
- The BMT – Naw. At best it is borderline. As I said, the film isn’t terrible. Just heavy handed, with bad villains, and a precursor too good to live up to. It is interesting to read stuff about the series. It does seem like they were desperate to make RoboCop a franchise. Just never really came together properly.
Hmmmm. Tough to figure out games when I usually do sequels and prequels … this movie already has both. I think I’m going to make up a new game. This I’m going to call Sklog-light. It is something from the movie just watched which perfectly exemplifies something from my recap. This time I’ll flesh out something in the recap which perhaps was not expounded upon enough: RoboCop 2 is heavy-handed. At the end of the film OmniCorp is presenting RoboCop 2 (the evil Cain as a cyborg monster) and we catch a nice glimpse of their new flags:
… snazzy. Those couldn’t possibly be alluding to anything. They probably aren’t a crazy Godwin’s Law directly in the viewer’s face. We get it RoboCop 2 writers … OmniCorp is a fascist corporate-government hybrid. Could have toned down the flag. I assume Hitler existed in the RoboCop universe. For a company who seems obsessed with public relations this seems … like a snafu.
I got a whole other recap to write! Plus we are a bit behind. So I’ll leave it there.