A surprisingly self-justifying remake/reboot of Paul Verhoeven’s 1987 dystopian satire, the new RoboCop is darker, noisier and less subversive. Brazilian director José Padilha, hot from the violent Elite Squad films, is a dab hand with the 2028-set action, as Joel Kinnaman’s Detroit cop is blown up in the line of duty and rebuilt as a law-enforcement cyborg by Gary Oldman’s boffin. Amid the CGI-reliant mayhem, debut screenwriter Joshua Zetumer delivers social comment about corporate might and an emotional story involving Robo’s wife and child. And some of the acting from Oldman, Michael Keaton (as a wicked CEO) and Broadchurch’s Marianne Jean-Baptiste elevates the wham-bang material to a higher plane. A sequel has been spoken of. Hope it’s better than the original RoboCop 2.
For more of today’s free-to-air films, see our TV listings