Brief Film Thoughts: Chappie

1.
I am a cinema sage with a great number of friends. So I’m often asked for film recommendations. If I suggest Chappie, they’ll ask what it’s about. These ‘friends’, however, simply cannot match my genius. Recognising their inferior intellect, I give the reductionist answer: “It’s Short Circuit meets Robocop”.

2.
While watching, I tried to ignore my Robocopian thoughts. Then I saw the Moose, which is a straight-up copy of Robocop’s Ed-209. There’s being overt with your inspirations. Then there’s letting others do the hard work.

3.
I edited these notes weeks after seeing the film, so I might have some plot points wrong. But did Moore (Jackman) really think that causing one model of his company’s robots to fail would make his model more attractive to their customers? If I bought a PC from Dell and it exploded and burnt down my house, I wouldn’t phone Dell to place another order for a different computer

4.
My favourite part was when Chappie was ‘born’. His body language perfectly conveyed recognisable child-like fear*. If someone whispered to him, he’d whisper back, which is what a kid would do. I also loved that his ears fell back when he was scared

* Chappie was ‘played’ by Sharlto Copley, star of District 9. At least according to Wiki (I’m too lazy to look elsewhere), Copley acted in scenes and was used as a reference by the animators, though he wasn’t actually motion-captured

5.
Many films can get away with tonal disparity. Yet after all the comedy moments throughout, it was difficult to get involved in a serious, dramatic shootout at the end. And was I supposed to feel for Ninja, who’d done nothing but bad things throughout the film?

6.
Great set design for Ninja and Yolandi’s home. Totally over the top

7.
Would Ninja and Yolandi really allow Deon to go home? They’ve just got this police superweapon, but they’re happy to let it’s creator go about his business, even though he could rat them out at any time?

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