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This review is from: Robocop (20th Anniversary Collector's Edition) (DVD)
On the cusp of HD, RoboCop gets re-released as a 20th Anniversary Collector's Edition DVD that portends quick obsolescence but you shouldn't let that dissuade you from purchasing this standard def DVD to tide you over until the HD format war has ended. However, it appears that there is a "glitch" more severe than a malfunctioning ED-209 present on Canadian versions of disc 2 with a duplication of disc 1 onto disc 2 and the first copy I purchased here in the US had an authoring glitch that would not allow me to select the DTS or alternate audio tracks on Disc 2. I can already hear the Old Man yelling "You call this a glitch!?" If you own the legendary Criterion release featuring the "Extended Cut" you will be pleased to know that the upgrade is well worth getting, though you will probably want to hold on to your original Criterion disc for some of the extras that didn't make the migration over to the new 20th Anniversary disc.
Disc 1 features the original theatrical cut in anamorphic 1:85:1 widescreen (The Criterion release was presented in 1:66:1 which is Paul Verhoeven's "preferred" aspect ratio) and Dolby 5.1 and DTS sound but the real treat on this disc is the excellent documentary "Flesh & Steel: The Making of RoboCop" featuring interviews with Paul Verhoeven, Jon Davison, Ed Neumeier, Basil Poledouris, and Peter Weller. There's also a couple of 8-minute 1987 featurettes: "Shooting RoboCop" featuring Miguel Ferrer in character as Bob Morton introducing RoboCop like an OCP publicity gimmick and "Making RoboCop" with a behind-the-scenes look at the production and interviews from back in the day. "The Boardroom" is a storyboard-to-film comparison of ED-209 accompanied with Phil Tippet commentary, 4 deleted scenes and the theatrical trailer with music from, appropriately enough, "The Terminator," another cyborg sci-fi smash from Orion Pictures.
Disc 2 features the "Extended Cut" in anamorphic widescreen 1:85:1 and Dolby 5.1 and DTS sound which is a phenomenal enhancement over the old Dolby surround mix on the Criterion release and restores :23 seconds of graphically violent shots of ED-209 gunning Mr. Kinny into hamburger in the OCP executive board room, Murphy's hand getting blown-off and his stump spurting blood, and Clarence Boddicker's jugular squirting blood after Robo stabs him in the throat which were edited from the theatrical version to garner an R-rating and have been seamlessly restored back into the film. Why they couldn't just make this a seamless-branching feature on the same disc as the theatrical version like the Commando Director's Cut DVD and put all of the bonus features on the second disc is puzzling though. Disc 2 also features another outstanding featurette: "Villains of Old Detroit" with new interviews with Kurtwood Smith, Ronny Cox, Miguel Ferrer, and Ray Wise and is a terrific follow up after watching the film. "Special Effects: Then and Now" talks about the advances in digital compositing versus the in-camera matte shots and stop-motion animation employed on creating ED-209. "RoboCop: Creating a Legend" features interviews with Peter Weller, Paul Verhoeven, Rob Botin, et al. about designing and engineering the suit and took between 10-11 hours each day to fit Peter Weller into before shooting.
As Murphy's Law would have it, ironically, I ended up having to return my first copy to the store I purchased it from because I was not able to select the DTS track on disc 2. The department manager and I tested this on different players and on another copy and confirmed the problem. Since originally writing this review I have recently obtained another copy from a different retailer and it did not have any of the problems selecting the audio tracks so I must have got one from a bad batch and hopefully it is fairly isolated. This is also going to be released on Blu-Ray but too bad it won't be a combo disc. I'd buy that for a dollar.
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Showing 1-10 of 10 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 20, 2007 3:17:08 PM PDT
Andrew W. Mcpheters says:
Posted on Sep 23, 2007 12:10:49 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 5, 2007 11:13:53 PM PDT
Dave Cordes says:
I couldn't select the other audio tracks on 4 different DVD players I own. The store manager opened up another copy and we tried it in the store on different DVD players and couldn't select DTS or any of the other audio tracks. The manager made the decision to pull them and I got my money refunded. I just purchased another copy from a different retailer and that copy was fine. I can select the DTS track and alternate audio tracks no problem so there must have been a bad batch of defective discs out there.
In reply to an earlier post on Jul 4, 2008 1:24:24 PM PDT
Lex Luthor says:
Did you have any trouble accessing the Photo Galleries? I could not access any of the 6 galleries included in the special features section. Also, my DTS track on Disc 2 does not play. All I get is silence once the movie starts after selecting that feature.
Posted on Feb 17, 2012 7:50:18 AM PST
the only versions of robocop unrated worth the money are the criterion print or the three disc trilogy set by mgm in 2004(during the dubya admin). i own the mgm print. the single dvd release is only good if you like reminiscience "then and now"
flashbacks. the only way i would buy this edition is if paul mcrane(emil), ray wise(leon nash) and nancy allen(anne lewis, the jewish cop!) are interviewed beyond what i already have. ronny cox, kurtwood smith(jewish),miguel ferrer and ray wise are my favorites, because these actors always impress me no matter what they do (film or tv). miguel ferrer starred in a drama a few years back on basic cable and i watched strickly for him! even ray wise had a good show for a few seasons on tv where he played the devil(i cannot remember the name of the show). i would love to know what felton perry(johnson),Robert Do'Qui(Sgt. reed) and the rest of the "villians" are up to these days. peter weller, however, will always have my respect, not merely as the original robocop(which would be selling him short) but that of a unique actor whom does his homework when required to in order to play a character with heart and realism (robocop, peter weller is too well known for. try "leviathan", "adventures of buckaroo banzi" and a few others.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 28, 2012 4:53:48 PM PDT
get the mgm 2004 trilogy print it has everything on it.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 28, 2012 4:54:22 PM PDT
get the mgm 2004 trilogy edition. it has everything on it.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 28, 2012 4:54:55 PM PDT
get the mg 2004 trilogy edition. it has everything on it.
Posted on Sep 5, 2013 7:30:30 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 5, 2013 7:43:46 PM PDT
Your review covers discs 1 and 2, but in the product details it says "Number of discs: 1".
This review seems to get lumped into several DVD and Bluray products?
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 5, 2013 7:33:47 PM PDT
Dave Cordes says:
Yes Amazon does that. They don't keep reviews separate from the original product. Sorry this review is from the 20th anniversary DVD.
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 5, 2013 7:44:28 PM PDT
Darn... I wonder if all the special features are all on one disc for the Bluray then?
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