Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Whither Rockycop?

I think it was in 1989 that a friend of mine called me up and told me they were filming Robocop 2 downtown in my city. He asked me if I wanted to go and see if we could watch some of it being filmed. Not being a common thing around here I decided to go with him to see what we could see. The majority of what we saw turned out to be the opening sequence of the movie. lots of storefronts were covered with facades and were painted in neon colors. There was a parking lot upon which was being built a wooden structure for the sole purpose of being destroyed in the movie. I don't remember being too excited until we found out that something was actually being filmed the moment we were there.

It was a scene in which Robocop was stepping out of his police car and the shot was of the bottom of a car door and his foot hitting the street. "All right!" I thought, "I get to see Peter Weller!" Sadly, no. It was Robocop's leg but it wasn't Peter Weller in it. Not being aware of the economics of Hollywood at the time, it didn't occur to me that having Mr. Weller in the robotic leg would cost considerably more than "Ernie Muckenfuch" in said leg. They must have filmed that leg coming out of the car 700 times. Hard as it may be to believe, it got a little old after about the 643rd time. I know, I'm as surprised as you! Anyway we had our fill and since they were in no hurry to include our (most likely) grubby selves in the movie, we made our exit.

Now I told you that story to tell you about this one. Much to my dismay, I read the following in a recent article:

"There are not any plans to erect a statue of RoboCop," the response on Bing's Twitter account read. "Thank you for your suggestion."-Dave Bing, Mayor of Detroit

Now don't get me wrong, the fact that I read it didn't dismay me, it was the content. Just getting that out of the way. Read the full article here. But still, the injustice of it all (no pun intended). Clearly Hizzoner has no intention of lifting a little finger to revive his threadbare city! No, they don't have to put it up at the top of a set of stairs or in front of a police station. Such prominence might detract from the poetic beauty of the city. Instead they could put it in a more appropriate place such as the basement of a crumbling building, or maybe a chemical waste facility. Surely there are more than one of those around there.

Think of the tourist trade! The dollars lost simply by people trying to find the statue would reach in the hundreds at least! Am I overusing my interjections in this paragraph!? I'm afraid we must consign ourselves to the fact that, at least in the Bing administration, Detroit will have to carry on without it's shining example of heroism.

Missed opportunities.

trailer for Robocop

trailer for Robocop 2

p.s.-In keeping with continuity of this site, I think I saw Robocop 2 in a dollar cinema. Or maybe not.