I would like to just say that I enjoyed the first one very much. When I heard Sly was coming out with a second one, I sighed and tilted my head to the side in questioning fashion. But once I saw the trailer and who was in the sequel, I freaked and shouted that I had to see it. So when I saw the trailer for the third one, I was a bit annoyed. He had me with his cast in the second movie, but the third one was a little “meh-ish”.
Wesley Snipes, while a fun actor to watch didn’t really tease out the action fan in me. Other than that, I was gathering that it was pretty much the same crew as before.
The opening scene was perfect for me! High energy, little bit of mystery going on, and lots of gunfire. Explosions? Coming right up, sir!
I should back this whole thing up with the fact that you have to watch these movies for what they are. Solid, straight up action flicks. I think the genius in these movies is that they don’t try to be anything else. Over the top explosions, massive guns, crazy amounts of never-ending rounds of ammunition, and over the top explosions! I especially like the fact that they refrain from the 80’s action movie staple of sex. Unless I wasn’t paying attention, they didn’t have any sexual imagery in any of the movies. I’m glad that Mr. Stallone understands that no one wants to see him in those kinds of scenes anymore.
I was planning to take this third trip for what it was meant to be, but as my sixteen year old son pointed out, the writers attempted to give one of the Expendables some back story. The whole story got bogged down by this attempt at character development and I found myself looking around to make sure I wasn’t on some hidden camera show from Lifetime or the WE Network. I don’t want to care about any of the Expendables. It was hard enough accepting what happened to Terry Crews at the beginning of the movie.
It was great to see Mel Gibson digging in deep and pulling from his acting chops as Martin Riggs from Lethal Weapon. I didn’t mind the predictable storyline and the over-believable stunts and explosions. In my humble opinion, there weren’t enough explosions! And I love these movies for their predictable storyline! So, I don’t know what the point was in those last two sentences.
I went to this movie expecting to get my man card punched a few times, but I left the theater feeling like I had been duped into chewing on a little tiny morsel of The Notebook in my action flick! Not a good combination. It’s like finding a smidge of gristle in an otherwise tasty burger. Once you notice it, you try to chew it up with the rest, but it sticks in your pallet and can never be separated from the whole.
I must stress that I loved this movie along with the two prequels. But here is my summary of points:
- I love the cheesy lines, but I hate them. There were some that really made me groan even more than I did in the first two movies.
- I could’ve believed Barney Ross’s decision when going after Stonebanks, but I still didn’t know how or why it made sense.
- Sad to say it, but Harrison Ford throwing on a jumpsuit and piloting a helicopter was too much for this Harrison Ford fan.
- Antonio Banderas was great! His character was a nice addition. The only downside with his character is that he had to deliver one of the worst bits of dialogue in the entire movie, his moment with the newly added female Expendable.
- Taking a plot from Rocky V, the young replacing the old, but then needing the old to help out gag gets me everytime. I am getting older, by the way.
- Over the top explosions!
- Kelsey Grammer!
- Arnold Schwarzenegger delivers the best line of the movie. I won’t give it all away, but it’s a part where everyone is rushing to get on a flying vehicle.
Keep in mind that this movie is rated PG-13. I was surprised to see that there was a family that brought a four year old to the showing. I wouldn’t have made that choice. I hope that it goes without saying that this is not a family movie and I am positive that my wife would not have enjoyed it. For an 80’s action movie fan, this whole franchise hits the spot. I love the souped up effects and the intentional one-liners. If you just take this movie for what it is, I don’t see how it could not be simply enjoyed!