Saturday, December 8, 2012

Review 107: "The Expendables 2"

It's silly how much fun
this movie is.

    The Expendables 2 follows Sylvester Stallone's team of mercenaries  (Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Terry Crews, Randy Couture and newcomer Liam Hemsworth) are hired by Bruce Willis to take Nan Yu and recover a mysterious box. However, the mission goes terrible wrong when Jean-Claude Van Damme takes the packages and kills an Expendable. With the rest of the Expendables out for revenge, Bruce Willis decides to joins the team out in the field and brings Chuck Norris and Arnold Schwarzenegger with him. Together, they try to free an innocent village and stop Van Damme.
    If you're wondering why I'm using the actors' names instead the characters' names, it's because I honestly can't remember any of them. Expendables 2 is just one of those movies. Normally those are movies I tends to dislike, however, Expendables 2 is a different case. Critically, I want to say that The Expendables 2 is a very poorly made movie, which it is, however, something is holding me back. And that something, is that this movie was freaking awesome.

This is glorious.
    I wasn't a big fan of the original Expendables. Yes, I did enjoy it and yes, I probably would have recommended it, but it wasn't until I geared up to see the second one that I realized that I didn't remember a damn thing about the movie. Fortunately, this one is more memorable, but it's not with some major flaws. Directed by Simon West (Taking over from Stallone), the film is sloppily edited, poorly directed movie with an awful story. Characters are introduced and never mentioned again. Character traits that seem to be setting up some sort of pay-off in the end are completely forgotten about once the crap hits the fan.
    There wasn't even a moment where I was really invested in the story and really cared about the characters. More often then not, I was waiting around for the next action scene to start up. The film even looks surprisingly cheap, with some of the worst special effects I've ever seen in a blockbuster release and a distinct grey tint to all the film's scenes. Now, I don't buy into the old complaint that an action movie can be excused of bad writing and directing just because it's an action movie.
    However, Expendables 2 knows what it's good at and boy is it good at it. The action of this movie is a sight to behold. The image of Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger blasting a bunch of bad guys into bloody chuck is one of the movie mind-blowingly cool things I've seen in any movie all year. Even Chuck Norris, who has one of the most downright idiotic and pointless cameos in any film ever made can be excused because of how well the movie uses him in the fight scenes. And Van Damme. Van Damme is playing the villain and he is loving it. He's one of the best villain this year and makes the last half-hour of Expendables 2 even movie like action film heaven. (Though, his best part comes early on in the film, when he roundhouse kicks a knife into a dude's heart. I may have shed a tear or two.)

Why isn't JCVD in every
action movie ever made?
    The Expendables 2 is about as shameless as it gets. The story is awful, the writing is worse and the directing is worse than that. However, the badassness of the film is so high that it's hard to complain. After all, with so many of the greatest action stars of all time in one place, the action is bound to be good. And boy is it good. The Expendables 2 gets 4 and a half stars out of 6.

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