I'll admit, the original RoboCop was a little before my time. The film is not as sacred to me as it is to some other folks on the internet, so I'm not as deeply upset about the new direction that José Padilha is taking with this property. That being said, there is not much about this new movie that I find exciting, or even interesting. If I had not seen the original, and knew nothing about the character, I'd probably say that this new movie just looks like yet another hapless Iron Man ripoff. This got me thinking: If I was in charge of the distribution of the film, how could I get a new generation of filmgoers interested in the project? What could I do to really make this film stand out from the rest? I had a few ideas to do just that.
1) Make it more (not less) violent than the previous films.
Let me just start right off the bat with one of the biggest complaints about the movie. Keep it rated R! In fact, go even bigger with the destruction and mayhem! I want to hear stories of having to reshoot the movie a billion times to avoid an NC-17. Or, what the hell, keep it NC-17, and wear that typically-taboo rating proudly on your sleeve. If there's one thing I know, it's that audiences love to watch some heads roll. But, instead of just rolling the heads, why not take a bunch of heads and use them as a makeshift Newton's cradle? Now THAT'S a movie! (I don't have a lot of friends...)
2) If you're really going to be different...
Why not make Alex Murphy a woman? This could be a refreshing change of pace from both the previous RoboCop movies, and the very strict gender expectations of the typical action movie audience. Generally, female-fronted action movies are viewed as a risk by major Hollywood studios, despite a few major successes, but the name recognition alone should make up for it. But Sy, you're probably saying, isn't this kind of gimmicky? Aren't you just gender-bending for the sake of gender-bending? Have no fear, because this leads directly to...
3) Write hand man (Get it? No? Okay...)
Now that we've established that Alex Murphy, aka RoboCop, is a woman, we'll need someone who we know can write great material for ass-kicking female heroes. And who could possibly be better than Mr. Joss Whedon? His list of dynamic and complex female characters is one of the most extensive of any writer/director today, and he could easily breathe new life into the character.
4) The bad guys are PEOPLE--not robots.
Glimpses of the first trailer suggest that RoboCop will feature a climactic battle between a half-man, half-robot, and... other robots.
Okay, no. Come on, guys! Kurtwood Smith shooting Peter Weller in the face just for fun? A guy being melted into toxic sludge? That same guy getting splattered across a windshield because he turned into toxic sludge? Those are the best parts of the movie! But no, we'll see robots fighting (insert Rocky Horror reference here) and not much else, so the movie can keep a PG-13 rating. Ho hum. Unless of course the movie is actually...
5) An adaptation of RoboCop vs Terminator.
If that's what ends up happening, forget what I just wrote. I'll never complain about this film again for as long as I live. Still, though, make it R. I don't care if kids can't see the movie, kids are obnoxious. Just sayin'.
What do you guys think? Is there something else that could/should have been done? Sound off in the comments section!