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ROBO COP
Paul Verhoeven said the reason why he did the movie was because it was a retelling of the story of Jesus Christ. He said Jesus "is the greatest" story ever told.  He went on to say that he had been a Pentecostal Christian.
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R
OBO COP
(1987)

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David Bruce
By David Bruce
"Part man. Part machine. All cop.
The future of law enforcement."
Murphy/Robo Cop: Peter Weller,
Lewis: Nancy Allen,
The Old Man: Daniel O'Herlihy,
Jones: Ronny Cox,
Clarence: Kurtwood Smith,
Morton: Miguel Ferrer,
Sgt. Reed: Robert DoQui.
Directed by Paul Verhoeven
P roduced by Arne Schmidt.
Screenplay by Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner.
Photographed by Jost Vacano.
Edited by Frank J. Urioste.
RoboCop created by Rob Bottin.
Running time: 103 minutes. Classified R.
The director is Paul Verhoeven. He is a gifted Dutch filmmaker whose earlier credits include "Soldier of Orange" and "The Fourth Man."  I read a Los Angeles Times Calendar section interview with Verhoeven when Robo Cop first came out.  He said the reason why he did the movie was because it was a retelling of the story of Jesus Christ. He said Jesus "is the greatest" story ever told.  He went on to say that he had been a Pentecostal Christian. But had since left the faith, but remained interested in the Christ story. There are, hence, many Christ-like moments in the film. The most obvious is the one below.
How do you make a perfect police officer?  By combining robotics with a human brain. The opportunity to do this comes when a hero cop (Peter Weller) is "killed" in the line of duty. The first "Robo Cop" is constructed - a half-man, half-machine.
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The killing of the officer follows in a Christ like fashion. His hand is nailed by a bullet. As he stands in crucified fashion his body is pierced with many bullets.  The last bullet is delivered to his brow.
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He is taken to the hospital where he his reconstructed. He is then resurrected as half human and half machine. Jesus at his resurrection was changed.  Robo Cop is a dual natured powerhouse of truth and justice. Notice the sign in the background that appears early in the film in back of Robo Cop, "The future has a silver lining." The resurrection of Robo Cob (Jesus) promises a better world for all of humanity. Roger Ebert very astutely observes that this film deals with the question  "What does it mean to be human?" Ebert continues, "He is more 'human,' indeed, when he is a Robocop than earlier in the movie, when he's an ordinary human being."

I have always looked forward to Paul Verhoeven films because of his fascination with the Christ story. But, I have been very disappointed. "Show Girls" was critically panned.  Why did he do it?  And his most resent bugs in space picture, although it did have a death and resurrection scene in it, was disappointing with its graphic and bloody depictions of people being cut in half by giant insects. My son, Cris, took me to see this last picture and afterwards we went out for coffee and discussed the problems of the film. I know Verhoeven has it in him. Perhaps a trip back to his old Pentecostal church might bring it out.

So, Verhoeven what does it mean to be fully human? Why the recent interest in young female breasts and violent depictions of human carnage? What, in God's name, is going on in your head? Good grief man, have you lost sight of your earlier noble quests?

 

VISITOR RESPONSES:

ROBOCOP TO JESUS?
Subject: RoboCop
Date: Fri, 15 Feb 2002
From: Dominique Dumas

I think you push a little when you compare Robocop to Jesus... Superman was easier to link to him... But come on, you'll soon link Jar Jar Binx to Jesus!!! That was one of the most violent movie I've ever seen, even many years later! And I'm somebody who's very tolerent to violence... I'm not christian, nor anything linked to a religion, I've been raised in a catholic environnement and just like for Robocop, some of your bible images you find in movies are really pushing far... I'm sure the directors are going to your site, look at your review and are rolling on the floor laughing with what you found!
Dominique Dumas

Response: This connection was not my original idea. It came from the director himself in an interview that appeared in the Calendar section of the LA Times. -David

RESURRECTION
Subject: Robo Cop
Date: Tue, 3 Jul 2001
From: "Can Nakkas"

Just a few thoughts on the RoboCop-Christ comparison:

1) According to the Mediabreak clip in the beginning, 31 cops were murdered, then the severely wounded Fredrickson dies, too. So when Murphy dies that makes him victim number 33. Christ was 33 when he was crucified (at least according to Christian lore). And just like Christ was resurrected, Murphy comes back to life as RoboCop.

2) If you look at Murphy's first name, it's Alex. One could interpret this as a Greek-Roman composite , a-lex, i.e. "no law". Christ came to liberate us from the law (cf. Letter to the Romans).

ROBO COP GUNS
August 7, 1999.

I am interested in 50 cal firearms. A friend mentioned a "Pulsa" or "Pulza", sounds like, the spelling is a guess, that was used in the movie "Robo Cop." Can you help me with a list of firearms used in the movie?
thanks, Lee

COMPARISONS AND PAUL VEROEVEN
July 30, 1999

hello, hi discovered your site while doing some late-night web surfing.  i found the "comparisons" interesting between Superman and Jesus. having recently listened to Paul Verhoeven's commentary and viewed the film countless times, i saw the connection between Robo and Christ. it's amazing how one story can inspire dozens of films and series.  isn't it odd, that once the sequels began for these two films, the qualiy went downhill (with the exception of Superman II- which is on par with the original in my view).
     i look forward to reading more of your page's content. i have no affiliation with any religious group or denomination, but i find the subject very interesting. especially when the art of filmmaking is involved.
-jh

MORE ROBO COP MOVIES
Feb 22 1999,

I think you should make more Robo Cop Moives.
Pmghera@execpc.com

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