Year:  2023

Director:  Piotr Latocha

Rated:  R

Release:  Out Now

Distributor: Nacon

Running time: 10-15 hours hours

Worth: $14.00
FilmInk rates movies out of $20 — the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

Peter Weller

… the most faithful and accurate feeling tribute to an iconic movie.

In the year of 1987, cinematic history was made by eccentric Dutch director (and deadset genius) Paul Verhoeven (Total Recall, Starship Troopers). Ol’ mate Pauly delivered a clever, exciting, satirical and absurdly violent flick that lampooned corporate greed, media sensationalism and American society. It also featured a cyborg that shoots a rapist fair in the dick. That movie, of course, was the great RoboCop, a legit action masterpiece.

Over the years, many attempts at video game adaptations have been made, most of them pretty ordinary, and even the good ones didn’t really capture the feel of Verhoeven’s classic. This glaring omission has been addressed by RoboCop: Rogue City, an earnest and frequently successful attempt at delivering the blood squib and dark quip laden experience that exploded into our collective faces some 36 years ago.

RoboCop: Rogue City takes place between the pretty decent RoboCop 2 and the stunningly awful RoboCop 3. Alex Murphy aka RoboCop (Peter Weller) is doing his best to serve the public trust, protect the innocent and uphold the law, but sinister corporation OCP, a new gang called the Torch Heads and fresh villain Wendell Antonowsky (brother of Emil, who was turned into a bubbling puddle in RoboCop) conspire to make life pretty bloody tough. Robo will need to fight the various forces of evil, manage to navigate the treacherous political landscape of dystopian Detroit and stay in control of his own sanity, which seems to be suffering from serious glitches.

All in all, it’s fair to say that there will be… trouble.

First things first, RoboCop: Rogue City absolutely nails the combat sections. The feel of your massive gun, the ways enemies blast apart with big chunky bloodsplosions and the sense of semi bulletproof solidity combine to make this a very film accurate experience. There are a thousand nice little touches, from the green hued HUD to the quality voice acting to really sell the experience.

Had Rogue City been a streamlined, linear game it would be near perfect, however its insistence on shoving in dozens of pretty ordinary side missions (“find your fellow officer’s yellow towel!”) and filler content negatively impacts the pacing, which is a pity. Sure, much of this stuff can be ignored but it does give the impression of developers Teyon trying to pad out the runtime. The script also never really rises above the level of “decent” or “not bad”, with amusing moments but nothing close to the sharpness of the original script by Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner

Still and all, when the bullets start flying and music gets pumping, it’s hard not to get caught up in the satirical power fantasy that captured the imaginations of Gen-Xers all those years ago. And while the jank and odd pacing aren’t ideal, they don’t stop RoboCop: Rogue City from being the most faithful and accurate feeling tribute to an iconic movie. Whether or not you think that’s worth the price of admission is… your move, creep.