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Overall Rating

Awesome: 1.96%
Worth A Look: 5.88%
Average: 7.84%
Pretty Bad: 29.41%
Total Crap54.9%

1 review, 45 user ratings

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Robocop 3
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by Chris Parry

"On it's own, a pretty good straight to video flick."
2 stars

Any movie with a '3' in its name is going to have trouble getting past the critics, no matter what. When it comes to a film like Robocop, which was a guilty pleasure to begin with, the prospect of a Robocop 3 is one that would hardly bring whoops of glee from the fans. With Peter Weller gone and director Paul Verhoeven nowhere to be seen, you'd expect it to be stupid. You'd expect it to miss the point of the original. You'd expect it to not be at all funny. You'd expect it to fail miserably. But Robocop 3, though far from impressive filmmaking, is also far from a miserable failure. In fact, it's surprisingly fun.

Paul Verhoeven makes sloppy movies, but he fills them with stuff that you can't ignore. Starship Troopers, if you're only looking for an action movie, is pretty weak. Showgirls, if you're just looking for titillation, is pretty weak. And Robocop, if you're after nothing but explosions... well, it's pretty decent. But none of these films would have been anything more than run of the mill mid-budget successes if not for the fact that Verhoeven infuses each of his films with a strong message. In fact, in two of those three examples, the message made the movie.

Starship Troopers pointed to our society as a messed up morass of people waving the flag as they seek to destroy the enemy, for no real reason more than bravado and nationalistic machismo. Robocop pointed to our increasing reliance on corproations and the outsourcing of government work to those only interested in making money, who would then betray us and enslave us to suit themselves. Showgirls... well, Showgirls showed the world that America is a prudish nation that fears the boob more than the bomb.

All three, in hindsight, mean more today than they did when they were shot. All three, in hindsight, were incredible successes, having earned a fortune on DVD and vido. And all three took a pounding from critics.

"My friends call me Murphy. You call me... Robocop."

So now we have Robocop 3. You'll recall that in the first film, the dreaded OCP created Robocop to phase out the less efficient, more expensive human police force, only for Robo's human parts to take over and go after the bad guys. In Robocop 2, OCP put together a new Robocop model containing the brain of a drug-addicted manaiac, and the two slugged it out with original Robo coming up trumps. In this one, the Robocops are pretty much old news, having been put into mothballs, so now OCP has been taken over by a Japanese mogul who wants to kick the population of part of Old Detroit out, knock down their homes and gentrify everything. So Robo comes back to kick more ass.

What makes this film worth checking out is that it understands the mentality of the first film. There's more message here, though it's hardly an original one, and there's a good amount of humor to go along with it. Sadly, the best of the humor comes in spikes that make you laugh out loud, then the screenplay goes back to awful dialogue, formula plotline and action that really doesn't trip the audience's trigger.

It does, however, feature an all-star cast, though most of the names in the film were not even close to being names when the film was made. Robert John Burke, who you'll recognize if you watch a lot of Hal Hartley films (he was the monster in No Such Thing, and one of the leads in the vastly underappreciated Simple Men) turns up as the replacement for Peter Weller (though Weller's face is used in stock footage/CGI shots). Rip Torn lobs in playing the same sleazy CEO character he has played nine hundred times before. Mako (the voice of Samurai Jack) appears as the new boss (same as the old boss). CCH Pounder comes in as the local resident with balls enough to take on the man. Jill Henessy stands out as Robo's mechanic, and Stephen Root shows he should never again try to play the Paul Reiser role from Aliens.

"I am now authorized to... be loyal as a puppy."

It's a real jumble of silliness with moments of actual intellect, but you can totally see where Frank Miller's script was rewritten by others. Some scenes are every bit as good as those in the original film, while others are so lame that you want slap your forehead. New characters brought in to push the story along (such as a young girl named Nikko who somehow knows how to reprogram a Robocop within seconds of looking at it) are nothing short of awful. Cliched subplots involving a freedom fighter who works for the other side are about as predictable as having a nightmare after eating a banana at two in the morning. And a tacked on sub-plot involving a ninja-bot just has to be laughed at to be believed.

No, it's not a good movie. In fact, it's really quite awful, to be honest. But as time has rolled on by, the 'look how far they've come' cast, the few moments of honest humor and the just plain schlock of it all make Robocop 3 an okay way to spend a buck on a week rental. Just be sure to turn it off before the entirely stupid last ten minutes, which is so ridiculous that it surely stopped the franchise cold all by itself.

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originally posted: 06/19/04 09:43:53
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User Comments

12/17/18 Ajpwales The sequels missed everything. Sound effects were missing from both. No style. 2 stars
9/02/14 Dude Should've stopped at 1 1 stars
12/31/10 Jeff Wilder Pointless and completely ridiculous 1 stars
2/05/09 Nar wow... I am now blind.... 0_0 1 stars
12/06/08 Shaun Wallner This movie was stupid! 1 stars
1/17/07 David Pollastrini not as good as the first two 3 stars
7/13/06 David Cohen One sequel too many 2 stars
5/28/06 JM Synth Enjoyed at age 11, about the target audience. Not unwatchable. TV shows were an improvement 2 stars
5/18/06 TreeTiger This movie is a horrible and pathetic attempt to milk to RoboCow... ;- 1 stars
3/13/06 date movie sucks again 1 stars
7/25/05 Indrid Cold 1 is classic, 2 is great, this one is barely watchable. 2 stars
7/17/04 legend law of sequels...better stop after the second one. 2 stars
6/30/04 spinz iunno robocop is still robocop... 3 stars
4/30/04 Gray crappy only when compared to robo 1+2 4 stars
4/17/04 BaztarD_101 God what was I thinking? 2 stars
4/07/04 daddy non 4 stars
3/30/04 Gray could have been better 4 stars
1/21/04 Betty White Bring back Peter Weller. 1 stars
11/25/03 Sean Thomas The worst mistake was to have Officer Louis die. Overall the movie sucked dog balls. 1 stars
10/17/03 Josh Standlee The only good "Robocop" movie was the first one. Why the hell did they make the sequals? 1 stars
7/15/03 Jon Lyrik The second was awful, but at least it wasn't a piece of watered-down shit like this "movie" 1 stars
9/02/02 y2mckay Robocop jumped the shark here. Frank Miller should stick to writing "Dark Knight" books. 2 stars
7/24/02 ed! frank miller #*$(@ed it up. i'll stick with the director's cut of RC1 1 stars
5/25/02 Charles Tatum Not the worst sequel ever made 3 stars
4/20/02 fdfds This movie is worse than Robocop 2. At least that movie is rated R. This is too kiddie! 1 stars
3/28/02 NeuroManson 5 years after the movie was done filming to (find an idiot) to release it, think about it! 1 stars
2/02/02 Anus Yawn. Frank Miller is retarded. 1 stars
11/27/01 sdfr atrocious, clumsy & inept adaptation of a typical frank miller scenario.. 1 stars
10/16/01 Mr. Hat Better than "RoboCop 2." 3 stars
9/18/01 Shams Huque Saddens me that the great first movie is being cheapened by this terrible second sequel. 2 stars
7/11/01 LCarter Pretend there were only two movies in the series. 1 stars
6/07/01 Rampage this was one of the worst Robocop movies I've seen 1 stars
4/23/01 big Dan the Man WELL SHIT ON ME THIS BITES 1 stars
4/10/01 KM I liked it. It wasn't a great emotional film. Its was entertaining. 5 stars
3/22/01 Thomas J. who needs a police force anyway??? 1 stars
3/09/01 nick possibly the shittest film I have ever seen! Why did they even make it? 1 stars
1/21/01 James Quinn Barf. 1 stars
1/17/01 Sklorsh One word for this movie - HORSESHIT 1 stars
11/29/00 Cristopher Revilla fuck the lame-ass sequels, fuck that bullshit series, FUCK IT!!! watch ONLY the original 1 stars
2/16/00 Kyle Broflovski Dreadful, horrible, embarrassing, stupefyingly bad, bad, bad. 1 stars
1/15/00 Croweater Total crap. I heard they shelved this for 3 years before release, is it any wonder? Awful!! 1 stars
1/13/00 Hangman the film's budget was about 50 bucks right? Shit, shit , buckets of pure shit. 1 stars
10/27/98 Cage Absolutely horrible... Bad plot, no Peter Weller.. Robo without R rating?? 2 stars
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  02-Feb-1993 (PG-13)
  DVD: 08-Jun-2004


  02-Jul-1993 (PG)

Directed by
  Fred Dekker

Written by
  Fred Dekker

  Mario Machado
  Robert John Burke
  Remy Ryan
  Jodi Long
  John Posey
  Rip Torn

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