We all have these moments when we recollect a movie, a movie that had an impact when we saw it. It might not have been a great movie, but there was something about the setting. In this case I was considering the 1984 movie Runaway. In it was Tom Selleck, Gene Simmons and Cynthia Rhodes. The idea of killer robots (spider edition) was not unique, not new, but there was something about it that had something. I reckon that in todays world, the idea of rogue systems, hacked systems with a killer result is actually a lot less weird than it was in 1984. The movie had more, but consider what this diamond in the rough could contain. Even if it merely holds a reference to the original, the stage of remote killing a person is appealing to a lot of people, and when we consider that in those days the smart bullet was a figment of science fiction, we now have the setting that in 2008 the EXACTO program began under DARPA to develop a “fire and forget” smart sniper rifle system including a guided smart bullet and improved scope. Even as the systems is seemingly not working, or not well enough, we got there or close to it 40 years later. We have zero day issues, we have hacked systems, and in 2019 the DHS (Department of Homeland Security) gave us “In late March, the agency warned that computer hackers can easily gain access to implanted cardiac defibrillators made by Medtronic.” In this we optionally got to the scenario that we saw in movies. In this, there is now a reason to consider that movie as the foundation of something new, whether it is a movie or a mini-series is up to the maker. I merely hope that Gene Simons will get to reprise his role as the evil party in this case, he really was a lot better then I thought he ever would be.
Whether it would be called Runaway (again), Remote by Rogue or merely Zero Day Kill would be up to the makers. Yet anyone in that field should take a look at that movie and see what was a figment in those days and what might be a lot less delusional in this day and age. And when we consider the impact of electronics, the right chip might give us a lot more options in that field and there would be all kinds of people interested in that, as such there are plenty of avenues to walk. I reckon that it might make a decent mini series (in 3-4 parts) but that is merely my view on the matter.
Yet what I didn’t know until today is that the movie was originally reviewed by Neil Gaiman (the man behind Good Omens, American Gods and the Sandman, He gave us “The race to outwit the cybernetic psycho is gripping stuff, mostly, with a terrifying showdown atop an unfinished skyscraper; and as the hero cop with no head for heights, Selleck is fine. In between, he spends too much time just being a heart-throb.” OK, I can see that view and it is in that that there is a much larger stage that could be walked by the right visionary (not me). I will leave it up to others to do this. I merely hope that this Michael Crichton original is not overlooked in a race for mediocre streaming series. There is plenty out there that could make for awesome stories. That is the nice side of what we can do today compared to what was created in the 80’s.