In 2019 Arrow Video released a 4K restoration of Robocop on Blu-ray which was presented in 1080p. While at the time, that disk was the best presentation of the iconic 1987 sci-fi masterpiece around, Arrow’s new full 4K UHD release takes full advantage of the restoration.
Very little needs to be said about the film itself, if you have never seen the original 1987 film, you are missing one of the greatest pieces of modern science fiction ever created. It is violent, gruesome, funny, and extremely intelligent. It is a product of its time and still very relevant today.
The 4K restoration, which was approved by Paul Verhoeven in 2013 looks incredible. The most noticeable upgrade from Arrow’s Blu-ray however is the addition of the Dolby Atmos track. We all know how great the Robocop score is and the film’s sound design. Well, Atmos absolutely ads to the experience at home.
Two different 4K UHDs were released in April. There was the Limited Edition which included the same packaging as the 2019 Blu-ray, complete with the 80-page booklet, six collector’s postcards, and double-sided fold-out poster. There is also the Limited Edition Steelbook. While I am usually a fan of the Steelbook, in this case, I would go for the other packaging. It is all a matter of taste.
If You are a fan of Robocop, then I highly recommend you include this in your collection. If you own Arrow’s 2019 Blu-ray, its’ not a must to upgrade as that disk still looks incredible. However, if you haven’t picked up that disk, then it won’t get better than the 4K UHD.
- 4K ULTRA HD BLU-RAY STEELBOOK EDITION CONTENTS
- 4K restoration of the film from the original camera negative by MGM, transferred in 2013 and approved by director Paul Verhoeven
- Director’s Cut and Theatrical Cut of the film on two 4K (2160p) UHD Blu-ray discs with Dolby Vision (HDR10 compatible)
- Original lossless stereo and four-channel mixes plus DTS-HD MA 5.1 and Dolby Atmos surround sound options on both cuts
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing on both cuts
- 44-page Limited Edition collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Omar Ahmed, Christopher Griffiths and Henry Blyth
DISC ONE – DIRECTOR’S CUT
- Commentary by director Paul Verhoeven, executive producer Jon Davison and co-writer Ed Neumeier (originally recorded for the Theatrical Cut and re-edited in 2014 for the Director’s Cut)
- Commentary by film historian Paul M. Sammon
- Commentary by fans Christopher Griffiths, Gary Smart and Eastwood Allen
- The Future of Law Enforcement: Creating RoboCop, an interview with co-writer Michael Miner
- RoboTalk, a conversation between co-writer Ed Neumeier and filmmakers David Birke (writer of Elle) and Nicholas McCarthy (director of Orion Pictures’ The Prodigy)
- Truth of Character, an interview with star Nancy Allen on her role as Lewis
- Casting Old Detroit, an interview with casting director Julie Selzer on how the film’s ensemble cast was assembled
- Connecting the Shots, an interview with second unit director and frequent Verhoeven collaborator Mark Goldblatt
- Analog, a featurette focusing on the special photographic effects, including new interviews with Peter Kuran and Kevin Kutchaver
- More Man Than Machine: Composing RoboCop, a tribute to composer Basil Poledouris featuring film music experts Jeff Bond, Lukas Kendall, Daniel Schweiger and Robert Townson
- RoboProps, a tour of super-fan Julien Dumont’s collection of original props and memorabilia
- 2012 Q&A with the Filmmakers, a panel discussion featuring Verhoeven, Davison, Neumeier, Miner, Allen, star Peter Weller and animator Phil Tippett
- RoboCop: Creating A Legend, Villains of Old Detroit, Special Effects: Then & Now, three archive featurettes from 2007 featuring interviews with cast and crew
- Paul Verhoeven Easter Egg
- Four deleted scenes
- The Boardroom: Storyboard with Commentary by Phil Tippett
- Director’s Cut Production Footage, raw dailies from the filming of the unrated gore scenes, presented in 4K (SDR)
- Two theatrical trailers and three TV spots
- Extensive image galleries
DISC TWO – THEATRICAL CUT
- Commentary by director Paul Verhoeven, executive producer Jon Davison and co-writer Ed Neumeier (originally recorded for Theatrical version of the film)
- Two Isolated Score tracks (Composer’s Original Score and Final Theatrical Mix)
- Edited-for-television version of the film, featuring alternate dubs, takes and edits of several scenes (95 mins, SD only)
- Split screen comparisons between the Director’s Cut and Theatrical Cut, and the Theatrical Cut and edited-for-TV version
- RoboCop: Edited for Television, a compilation of alternate scenes from two edited-for-television versions, including outtakes newly transferred in HD from recently unearthed 35mm elements
By: Marc Ferman