I Wish I Remembered Robot Jox
By Johnny Apocalypse
April 1st, 2014
When Editor Forbis told me that we were doing a Robot-themed issue of Acid Logic, the first thing that popped into my head was a movie I liked as a kid called “Robot Jox”. Sadly that’s also the only thing that popped into my head. More sadly, it would make a decent article for a robot issue. Even more sadly, I barely remember the damn movie at all.
So what’s the movie about? All I really remember is people in gigantic robots (nowadays referred to as “mechs”) fighting each other. It probably took place in the future, probably after some sort of nasty world war. I also seem to remember an audience watching the robo-fights, and all the spectators were wearing those face masks that doctors wear during surgery so they don’t sneeze on your internal organs, which leads me to believe that the future was heavily polluted or some nonsense.
I figure that a movie about giant robots fighting each other would probably be pretty decent in some respect, so I checked out my On Demand cable listing to try to find it. That would definitely help me write an article about it. Sadly, it wasn’t available On Demand, and the search function didn’t show it playing any time soon.
So all I’m left with is my spotty memory of a movie I watched about twenty years ago, right? Wrong! Not when you have Wikipedia!
Let’s see here… The movie follows a character named Achilles, and people inside giant robots fight each other to settle territorial disputes in a post-apocalyptic world. Well assuming the post-apocalyptic world was in a post-apocalyptic state because of either nuclear war or heavy pollution, that explains the audience people wearing face masks. Although in a radioactive world those masks wouldn’t do jack shit… And I seriously don’t remember anything about territory disputes… But that could be because I was about 10 when I watched this movie, definitely wouldn’t understand a territory dispute too well…
Okay, so Wikipedia didn’t jog my memory in the least. Let’s see, who was in the movie… Gary Graham, Anne-Marie Johnson and Paul Koslo. I definitely don’t remember these people. Gary Graham was in a bunch of science fiction TV shows, that I never watched. Anne-Marie Johnson was on “In Living Color” for one year, but I also watched that when I was 10 and don’t remember shit… Paul Koslo was in “The Omega Man” and “Mr. Majestyk”. I’ve seen both of those! Let’s see, in “The Omega Man” he played a good guy named Dutch… That’s definitely something I don’t remember… And in “Mr. Majestyk” he was a small time hoodlum in the beginning of the movie… Sort of remember that… Maybe…
Okay, that’s obviously not going to help me dredge up the damn movie from my memory. Back to Wikipedia. Oh, Stuart Gordon directed this! I definitely remember that guy!
Stuart Gordon is one of the kings of cult film directors in my mind. He’s the visionary genius behind the humorous Lovecraft adaptations of “Re-Animator” and “From Beyond”, and the not so humorous adaptations of “Dreams in the Witch House”, three fine non-robotic movies that will in no way help me write an article based upon a movie full of robots. Fuck.
I’m starting to really wished I watched “Pacific Rim”, then I’d have an article about robots. Or wish I’d been replaced by robots at a previous job so I could complain about it here (a robotic bill collector would at least have gotten me out of that gig a little faster).
What I really need is a better memory. My memory sucks. There’s an idea, a robotic memory. Just cram a few gigs of RAM in there, maybe a hard drive magnet or two for good measure, and bam, robo-memory. That would help me in a lot of situations.
You know what? Fuck this “Robot Jox” nonsense. I’m talking about the new Robocop movie.
Have you seen the new Robocop movie? It’s complete shit. And I’m not just saying that because I’m a huge fan of the original (which I am), but because the new one it legitimately bad in it’s own right. Two words can sum it up: cheesy and juvenile. And if you thought the original was cheesy and juvenile, don’t see the new one. You’ll have an aneurysm.
The new Robocop was geared towards children, and that’s the problem. The original movie was meant to be violent, really violent, and that’s one of its trademarks. In this movie, Robocop’s gun is given a stun function, which is just a crime. If I made a Robocop to patrol the streets it would have two program modes: arrest, and murder. Not even a “dismiss as an innocent bystander” function to the system, just arrest and murder people. That’s all you need in a Robocop.
I had some high hopes because the director was talking about discussing what happens to free will when you inject programming into the mind. Sadly, that’s a total of three minutes in the movie, and isn’t so much discussed as it was just shows that the freedom of the will outdoes the computer programming because they damn well say it does. No discussion, no reasoning. Just Robocop overcoming the programming.
That’s another problem with children and gearing movies towards them: they have no appreciation of philosophy. If the movie had touched on this topic with a little more depth, it would have had that saving grace. But no, we can’t let kids worry about that. Just show Robocop stunning everything in site.
If your friends want to see the new Robocop, kick them in the balls and go watch Robot Jox instead. I don’t really remember it being any worse.
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