Sunday, August 19, 2012

Movie Review: Expendables 2

Sometimes you just need a mindless testosterone filled shoot em up movie to enjoy for 2 hours. Following up on The Expendables, Sylvester Stallone decided to call every action hero of the 80's and 90's and ask them to be in this. A bunch of them said hell yeah. But not Steven Seagal because he's Hard to Kill.

The guys this time around don't waste any time, there's a bloody gun fight within the first 5 minutes before we even get the title card. The crew which is all the core Hail Caesar (Terry Crews), Toll Road (Randy Couture), Gunnar (Dolph Lundgren)  from the first movie plus the newbie Billy the Kid (Liam Hemsworth) to go in and rescue a kidnapped Chinese businessman. After Lee Christmas (Jason Statham) compares himself to the kid a few times and Barney admires the kid's skill level and dedication, the guys get a new mission from Church (Bruce Willis) and that they have to bring someone with them. Maggie (Yu Nan) of course turns out to not only be smart she of course spends the movie kicking ass like the rest of them.

The movie pretty much does not slow down with the action. The villain this time around is Jean Claude Van-Damme as basically a guy who steals plutonium to sell to the highest bidder. He doesn't do much of the dirty work, he has his henchman Hector (Scott Atkins) just has some comically funny lines because of his heavy accented delivery. I haven't seen a Van-Damme movie in so long I can't remember if this is normal or intentional. His only real action are killing a pivotal cast member and his 1-on-1 fight with Stallone.

Because the cast grew so much those who were pivotal in previous movies got smaller parts Jet Li isn't in ¾ of the movie or in the case of Mickey Rourke who isn't even in it at all, while other have larger roles, Trench (Arnold Schwarzenegger) isn't in a lot of scenes but his role is larger and he delivers some of the most hilarious lines, Church's role is also much larger this time around and not only gets into the action he is also given some very hilarious zingers. And of course Chuck Norris is in this and they completely play into the Chuck Norris memes we have all grown to make up. In fact there's lots of inside jokes about The Terminator, them being way to old for this and some Die Hard comments. Its a sly way to break the 4th wall and let the audience in on the running joke.

I am going to go and give this movie a full price. Lets be honest the plot is not unbelievable but its not remotely central to whats being setup on screen which is how can we spend all of our budget on a script with a comedic twist and enough explosive stunts to rival the CGI in the last Transformers movie. You aren't going to see this for a storyline you're going because of who's in it and for the action and this movie doesn't try to be more it is what it is and I loved it.

The Expendables is rated R. It clocks in at 1 hour 43 minutes and you won't even notice.  


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