Friday, August 15, 2014

The Expendables 3 (2014)

Director: Patrick Hughes

Writers: Sylvester Stallone, Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikt

Composer: Brian Tyler

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mel Gibson, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Kelsey Grammer, Glen Powell, Antonio Banderas, Victor Ortiz, Ronda Rousey, Kellan Lutz, Jet Li, Ivan Kostadinov, Robert Davi, Frank Pesce

More info: IMDb

Tagline: New team. New attitude. New mission.

Plot: Barney augments his team with new blood for a personal battle: to take down Conrad Stonebanks, the Expendables co-founder and notorious arms trader who is hell bent on wiping out Barney and every single one of his associates.

My rating: 6.5/10

Will I watch it again? Sure.

Watching these films is a lot like eating at a buffet where you get a little bit of everything.  But the problem with buffets is they're rarely really good.  Some items are boring as shit because they came straight from a can and others are actually prepared and cooked to a much higher standard.  By the end of the meal you're probably too full to think about ever eating another meal and there tends to be some regret like a bad one night stand the morning after.  It's really great seeing these folks on the big screen all in one place.  Everyone in the cast (and it's a doosie) gets their moment in the sun and the all look like they're having a great time.  Even though this time out it's not as fun as the second film, I still want to see them back for more adventures.  It's the kind of franchise that can literally go on forever.  Snipes and Grammer get enough screen time to satisfy their fans but you'll still want more.  Gibson is awesome as the bad guy and the monologue he has on the plane is fantastic.  We get to learn more about the early days of The Expendables and let's just say they did some bad things.  It's a relatively fun film with some laughs and lots of kills.

My biggest complaint, and this is huge, is the faster than the speed of sound editing in the action scenes.  The fights are, well, uh, there...I think.  At least that's what the machine gun visuals told me.  It all happens so quick that there's no way you can tell any of these people have any talent and skill in play-fighting.  Anyone can look like they're kicking ass when the scenes are cut so quickly.  A 94 year old grandmother in a walker could look like a badass killing machine with that kind of camera/film trickery.  It's distracting.  And there are a lot of 'that's-near'impossible' CG stunts that take you out of any reality they might have tried to create. That means it's more of a comic book-y movie than the previous two films.  And the whole thing about some glorified wrist watch being used to hack into the computer that's going to detonate a gazillion packs of C4 is just plain retarded.  I'm digressing, sure, but ultimately this is about some mindless action with a cast to dream for.  I'd just like to have seen the cartoonishness of it toned down to give the cast a little more respect.  Still, it's a fun movie and fans of any of these cats will be moderately glad they saw it on the big screen. Oh, and Antonio Banderas steals every scene he's in and brings some welcome comic relief just when you think the picture has slowed down a bit too much.  I love this guy...strictly as a heterosexual male, of course...that is, uh, maybe after a few drinks (and none of that bottom shelf shit, either)...I'm just sayin', he might be able to charm the pants off of me...wait...I've said too much...

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