Home Culture You’ve Gotta See Robocop 2 – Essential Cyberpunk Cinema

You’ve Gotta See Robocop 2 – Essential Cyberpunk Cinema

by Phillip Mortimer
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The Heroic Cyborg From Detroit Guns His Way Through the Second Installment of the Robocop Series

1990 saw the return of Robocop in Robocop 2. The sequel doesn’t suffer from a lack of talent – Peter Weller and Nancy Allen return as their roles of Murphy and Lewis, with Tom Noonan as Cain, the main antagonist. Irvin Kirschner (Empire Strikes Back, Never Say Never Again) directs, and the screenplay is written by the great Frank Miller (The Dark Knight Returns, 300, Sin City). This time around, the evil OCP corporation is trying to buy Detroit out from under the government, and will stop at nothing to achieve their evil corporate goals. Robocop 2 blends sci-fi, horror, noir, and comedy into something you gotta see.

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Magnavolt Anti-Theft Devices

Human life is pretty cheap in the future dystopia of Detroit, and this is reinforced by the several fake commercials that the movie shows. When someone tries to steal your car in the future, how are you going to stop them? If you have a Magnavolt anti-theft device in your vehicle, you’re completely covered. It will strap in the offending criminal with steel straps, and electrocute them til dead. All you need to do to get back on the road is remove the dead body! Easy peasy.

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One of the Main Bad Guys is a 12 Year Old Boy For Some Reason

You read that right.  A KID is the boss. Second in command of the criminal organization terrorizing Detroit with violence and drugs is a tween boy. The best thing is that absolutely no mention is made of his age. He dresses, speaks, and acts like a regular seasoned criminal. People take his orders, he engages in shootouts with the cops, he dresses in suits, and acts like a normal 30 year old criminal. It’s as if at the last minute, the movie production team just decided to sub in a kid for one of the main bad guys, and didn’t change anything else in the script. It’s strange and awesome.

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Robocop on a Motorcycle

A year before James Cameron put Schwarzenegger on a Harley Davidson Fat Boy in Terminator 2, Robocop was cruising in style on a FXSTC Softail Custom. There’s nothing like a cyborg on a hog, and Robo proves this by getting into a game of chicken/joust with the bad guy Cain, who is in some kind of armored dump truck. Robo crashes into it head on, and with no restraining device, goes straight through the windshield and apprehends the villain. Your move, creep.

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Robocop is Made of Mithril or Possibly Adamantium

Robo takes some serious punishment this time around, but keeps on tickin’ all the way through. He gets shot about 500 times (a given), blown up with a rocket launcher (two separate occasions), sawn in half, thrown off the top of a skyscraper, plasma torched, hammered, gassed, smashed with a beam, and just generally disrespected in this movie. This is not a problem for our intrepid cyborg, as he comes through just fine to deliver his catchphrase “we’re only human” at the conclusion of the film, with only a couple of scratches to show for it.

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Nice Guy Robocop

Halfway through the movie, Omni Consumer Products manages to get their hands on Robo, and decides that he’s getting in the way of their plans for world domination. Instead of deactivating him, they just reprogram him to be a nice robot instead of a relentless shoot-em-up bad-guy-killing machine. It’s pretty funny to watch our hero change his voice to a lilting sing-song as he tries to reason with Detroit bad guys instead of shooting them. Eventually he uses a large jolt of electricity to reset himself, but not before he gets spray painted by a bunch of neighborhood kids.

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Robocop Version 2

OCP tries unsuccessfully to replicate Robocop – the test subjects keep losing their minds and going haywire. This is when they ask themselves “what if we have been using the wrong people?” They decide to try a drug-addicted psychopath instead, with the premise that withholding drugs from him will keep him under control. This doesn’t go well, and “Robocop 2” goes on a rampage around Detroit with his minigun arms, killing what feels like another 500 people before Robocop takes him out. The head of OCP calmly steps over the piles of bodies and leaves in a limousine – end movie. What happens next? Does Robocop go to a bar and swill cyborg cocktails? Most of of criminals have been taken out by Robocop, and most of the innocent people have been killed by Robocop 2, so is there anyone left in Detroit? Will the police department upgrade their cruisers from what are very clearly just matte black 1988 Crown Victorias? We’ll have to watch Robocop 3 to find out…

We know cyberpunk movies, so let us tell you what you’re missing. What’s timeless? What didn’t age so well? Share this article, and we’ll make the case for Robocop 2.

Did we miss something here? Was there an unforgettable scene or classic one-liner that just shouldn’t be left out? What are your favorite parts of this movie? Leave us a comment below, and we’ll try to update the article with your suggestions!

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