This summer will see a flood of quiet movie releases as the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic starts to wind down a little here in the States, and among them will be The Protégé.
Originally slated for an April release, it seems the newest flick from director Martin Campbell has been pushed to August 20th for a national release in the US. The film is headlined by Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Keaton, and of course – the incomparable Maggie Q.
While I’m sure we all had a favorite scene from the recently released Captain America: Civil War, everyone can agree Tom Holland’s debut as the web-swinging Spider-Man was a shining moment. Not only was it great to see Spidey in the MCU for the first time, but this appearance also was a delightful treat for any fan of the classic Spidey so many of us grew up with.
Now, considering some of the rumors we’ve been hearing about Marvel/Sony’s upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming, this isn’t the only treat for classic fans we’ll see.Most of what we know so far is unconfirmed rumors or fan-driven leaks, but we’ll cover some of these today.
So now two new trailers have arrived for the film which is fast becoming the bane of all pop culture fans everywhere. Yes you guessed it it’s the Robocop remake. Why do people hate this movie so much compared to other remakes? The lure of nostalgia is obviously strong and the fact the original movie is beloved by fans (because of its hard-hitting violence and social commentary means the new movie has very big expectations to live up to. As a Robocop fan myself I feel their pain, there have been too many sub standard remakes to make anyone think differently. But after seeing the first trailer a while ago it did peak my interest enough to not be to judgemental about it. This new trailer expands more on the information we saw in the first trailer. Watch it below and see what you think.
Some interesting things come out of this. We see a lot more emphasis on Alex Murphy as a family man and the problems caused with him now being a big old cyborg. Gary Oldman Doctor gets to show the more sensitive side of science here and he is engaging enough, while Joel Kinnaman as Murphy looks in this trailer a little bit of an under whelming screen presence. In his defence though aside from a few brief moments of confusion over his new form, he is mostly seen blowing stuff up which we see a fair bit off. ED 209 and the Robodrones cover the streets and some nice scenes of Robocop in training and jumping about on the street show the action is a lot more streamlined and (dare we say) Hollywood than the gritty original. The robots have a Battlestar Galactica feel to them which I am still not sure about, more exposure should confirm whether I like or dislike this style. The worry that the speed that the CGI scenes whiz by the viewer could easily turn this into another Transformers movie if all the film is constantly like this.
Let’s move on to the next trailer now and we notice a slightly different tone here. Check out the trailer below.
“Why is America so Robophobic?” is not only an awesome line but could also be a little tongue in cheek jab at the haters of the film. There are some more alternative action scenes here, but for the most part this focuses on the propaganda element of the film and it does this to great effect.. Media spinning Samuel L Jackson as Pat Novak and money grabbing Michael Keaton as Raymond Sellars shine when ever they are on-screen (not surprising with their strong screen presence). The trailer makes sure that the audience knows that O.C.P are still money grabbing scum bags.
So overall the film still looks kind of impressive and this reviewer is still very interested to see how this all pans out. There are some concerns here aside from the memories of the past affecting the present. The action scenes from both trailers, though they look fast and streamlined also look a bit to sharp and kind of hollow. It fits in with the style of movie they are going for, less grime more style but I’m concerned that this will become more style over substance. This gleaming, futuristic look the film is going for were everything is made to look slick and polished makes Murphy having his hand still human seem slightly redundant. Would O.C.P not just whip it off and give him a robot hand as it is more productive? I can understand the face exposure because that shows a human side to him which people can relate to. I assume the hand has been left there as a nod to the fans. Story wise I doubt it will make a difference either way. I have noticed that each trailer seems to make Robocop less cop and more superhero like. The shots of him jumping high up in the air and the sleek, black armour he now has on would not look a miss in an X-Men movie. Some of the fears I have about this been a tad dull and suffering from Total Recall remake syndrome (look at my previous article on this to see what I mean ) are still there, but it is tricky to truly know from just a trailer. At least it warrants a watch and if nothing else I want to be able to see this film and then say whether it crashed or burned through my own view point. All we need is an entertaining movie and that cannot be too hard to make right? Well should not be to long until we find out the films released on February 2014 (changes withstanding). For now I leave you with some publicity stills that showcase a few familiar faces you may recognise from the above trailers (like Jackie Earle Haley as Mattox). Enjoy and remember don’t be a Robohater people!
When news that a remake to Robocop was coming out, the internet almost imploded with the sheer volume of venom and bile that was unleashed. The original Robocop has always had a warm place in the hearts of fans. The clever mix of ultra violence, angst and social commentary meshed well to give us a truly stunning piece of ’80s cinema. So it’s understandable that there may be a certain amount of tension when a new version is released. Even this reviewer was slightly nonplussed by the news, and when shots of the new suit came out face palms were felt all around the world. It looked pretty dire and people could hardly believe they were thinking of using this version over the classic silver suit Peter Weller wore. It did not really exude confidence in the new film. Well now it is time to put up or shut up because the new trailer is out. See what you think below.
So there you go. Now I do not know how this trailer went down with everyone else, but personally, I liked it. The tone still seems to be dark, but not as gritty as the original. The darkness is still there hidden under all the shiny metal and techno heavy visuals. Hopefully it will not suffer the same fate as the TotalRecall remake, where the futuristic look over shadowed the fact that the film somehow managed to take all the fun out of the movie and made it a dreadful bore. This trailer is anything but that, with the action coming at you thick and fast and for once you can actually see the events as they take place, rather than say the Transformers franchise where the gleaming metal battles all gel into a CGI mess.
Let’s not forget about the cast, and boy what a cast. Samuel Jackson, Michael Keaton, and Gary Oldman are just a few of the names involved, and they certainly seem to be enjoying themselves. Unlike the OCP from the original where most of the people working for the company were dicks (and we loved them for it, who can forget Dick Jones, Bob Morton and Clarence J.Boddicker), here it seems Oldman is to be the scientist with a heart, while Keaton is chewing up the scenery in a more corporate way than his predecessors.
Giving Alex Murphy and his family more screen time seems to be a good call as it adds a nice dynamic to the tale. How do decide if your husband should be given a new lease on life but lose some of his humanity? These clips with the family should make for some touching scenes in the movie if the trailer is to go by.
The new designs look great. ED 209 has been slightly revamped, and as much as I love the old clunky model I am interested to see how this new, more streamlined version will fare on-screen. The new suit after all the moaning does look good in action. The visor sliding up and down adds a nice element, and again helps to keep the human side of Robocop visible more. The scene with numerous Robocop models taking on the Alex Murphy Robocop certainly interested me and the voice is spot on. The main downside to this is there is no police presence in the trailer that I could see. So the dynamic that Murphy and Anne Lewis had in the original seems to have been removed to focus more on Alex Murphy’s family issues. I can see the point, but it does not mean that I a tinge of remorse we are going to lose that side of the movie. But that’s what happens with change.
Let’s just get one thing clear in our minds. This is never going to be Paul Verhoeven Robocop. That movie is irreparable. But much liked other remakes that have worked (Dawnof theDead, The TexasChainsaw Massacre, Star Trek) it has taken the core idea and given it a different spin. Do we forget about the original Texas Chainsaw movies now that the remake has been made? Of cause not. Both live together in cinematic harmony and both have their own fan bases. Could we have room for two Robocop’s? I believe so, but only if the film is good. The last thing we need is another shitty remake. Fingers crossed this will be the former rather than the later, and if it lives up to the promise of the trailer we could be in for a treat. No matter what, Peter Weller’s iconic turn in the role of Robocop will never be forgotten, but maybe we can find a space for Joel Kinnaman portrayal too? I would like to think so, we’ll just have to look past that PG-13 rating first…
Michael Keaton has been a little quiet in recent years but that’s all about to change with not only the Robocop but also a dark comedy called Birdman. Now I say it isn’t the Birdman of Hanna-Barbara fame, but no one really knows. All we have to go off if the logline so far…
[quote]A washed up actor who once played an iconic superhero must overcome his ego and family trouble as he prepares to mount a Broadway play in a bid to reclaim past glory.[/quote]
Could the “iconic superhero” be the Birdman? Could he even be Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law? Unlikely, but how awesome would that be? What we do know is Michael Keaton plays the lead role of Riggan Thomson, washed up actor. Surrounding him is a host of talented actors including Edward Norton (who also took a turn as a superhero back in the day), Naomi Watts, Zach Galifinakis, and Emma Stone. While the casting is impressive, the man behind the camera ain’t too shabby himself.
Alejandro González Iñárritu has a resume that speaks for itself. His 2006 film, Babel, which he wrote and directed, same as Birdman, was nominated for two Oscars as well as winning a host of various festival and awards show prizes, not the least of which was a Best Picture Golden Globe. Whilehe himself wasn’t nominated for an Oscar for 2003’s 21 Grams, two of the actors (Naomi Watts and Benicio Del Toro) were so he’s no stranger to winning.
Could Birdman be the Academy Award winning vehicle that has alluded Michael Keaton for so many years? Granted he hasn’t made a career out of “Oscar worthy” films but there have been plenty of times he could have been given a nod, Batman or Beetlejuice come to mind. Given Iñárritu’s proclivity for directing award winners, there’s a good chance we might see Mr. Mom up on stage come awards season.
Even though Birdman is listed as in post-production, there hasn’t been a lot seen of this movie. As a matter of fact there is just a few pictures of filming that have only been published in the last few weeks. Hopefully as they move further along the production process we’ll get a better glimpse of Birdman and find out just exactly who we’re dealing with.
Birdman does not yet have a firm release date, but is expected sometime in 2014.