Wednesday, September 08, 2010

The WTF List: The Expendables (Review)

The super team concept is nothing new. Let's pile on the stars and blow shit up. Ensemble casting works and with the action movie as low as its been in years, you need the star power to get people into the theaters.

Oddly, as I was watching this I kept thinking how The Expendables can be compared to the Miami Heat. Stallone is Wade, Lebron is Jason Statham and Bosh is Jet Li. All sacrificed their egos at the door to make one blockbuster movie. Did you think anybody from the team was going to die? Hahaha...seriously right? Fuck no. They're all badasses. Terry Crews and Coutoure are the non mega stars but no way were they gonna die.

I mean even the bad apple (Dolph) survived. So we can say the Miami Heat are the super friends coming together to destroy every team in the NBA. But the big question for the Heat is will everybody be happy with less points and being "The Man" on his team for the sake of a championship? Nobody knows for sure but when I watched The Expendables, the screen time was sacrificed by all.

Here's what I noticed:
  • Stallone kicks ass but doesn't have the awesome murder death kills he usually has
  • Statham steals the show here (knife throwing plus gun play) and that basketball scene making him the "true star" of The Expendables
  • Jet Li gets some token screen time via Dolph
I was so hyped to see all these mega stars together that when they were 187-ing the Val Verde (or whatever that country was called) army I was a little underwhelmed. Sure it was fun but too much star power I think was overkill.

Let's explore this further with a WTF List.

1.) Do you really need to send in The Expendables when you gotta kill Somali pirates? I think the Navy did a good job on this.
2.) HOLY FUCKIN COW! The uber mega scene between Stallone, Willis and Schwarenegger was every fan boys dream come true.

(sidenote: I think Arnold's character of Trench is really Dutch (from Predator) who in reality is really Matrix (from Commando))

3.) The Expendables are such a goofy crew when you break them down racially: You got a big roided up American, a British guy, a Chinese guy, a pa pa powerful black dude, a Swedish guy and a fucked up ear guy.
4.) They are taking on a former CIA agent white guy, Stone Cold and an entire South American Army
5.) Seriously, Matrix could have easily wiped out the army of Vilena in 20 minutes (see Val Verde)
6.) The knife throwing Lee Christmas should have his own movie
7.) The car chase scene to the airplane was really lame....right? Though it led to mega 'splosions
8.) I like how Stallone wrote up a scene for Statham (basketball scene) and for Li (vs Dolph). Cmon, we would have loved seeing Jet Li wipe out an entire platoon by himself
9.) I have the exact number of explosives they planted. It was 1,947.
10.) That Vilena girl wasn't even that hot. Couldn't they get Zoe Saldana? She will act for food.
11.) These island nations should really not accept a shady ex CIA agent's help.
12.) Pa pa pa pa POWER!!!! (in other words Terry Crews can blow up lookout towers looking cool)
13.) OMG, was that an action montage within another action montage within another action montage???!?!??!?
14.) I think I counted 4 wrestling moves, 3 MMA moves and 89 martial arts moves.
15.) Stone Cold acting tough is such a stretch
16.) I feel for the henchmen army. All they wanted to do was support their families by earning meager paychecks from the government. Now all of them are dead, dismembered or highly unconscious
17.) And why was Mickey Rourke in this?
18.) Technically, Stone Cold fucked up Stallone
19.) I appreciate a good decapitation
20.) So all I need is 5 million dollars to hire The Expendables? Do you guys do birthday parties?

Sure its filled with action cliches and alpha male bravado but its still a solid flick. Each of the "big 3" could have had more screen time and I kinda felt too much stuff was going on at once. The CGI blood and explosions were aggravating to watch but who I to complain as Stallone did it in Rambo.

The Expendables is a very movable objects meeting an unstoppable force. It's an entertaining movie but a bit boring. Here goes my last NBA analogy. Would I rather see the Heat destroy the Clippers by 50 or see Kevin Durant and the Thunder plays a close game as he hits the game winner.

I'm picking the latter. Now where's my Crank 3 Jason Statham???


Check out the "Call to Arms" trailer below!

1 comment:

  1. True, ensemble movie is not that new, but a movie packed with badasses takes the cake! From beginning to end is nothing but action and a hint of humor which will make all your teeth fall off due to sheer manliness that'll make you run to the dentist afterwards.

    What cracks me up the most when I first watched it on the big screen in Knoxville, TN, is how Terry Crews acts with his automatic shotgun that's as huge as his biceps, and using a straight razor like a throwing knife.