Film Reviews


By • Sep 5th, 2010 •

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If muscles were measured in voltage, the screen would generate 50,000 audience-electrocuting volts. This is what you get when Sylvester Stallone and his commando posse of meat head, tough guy, pro wrestling, MMA, karate, head pounding, thick necked bad asses maraud the planet in search of pirates, women under siege, and rogue CIA operatives exploiting and terrorizing natives of a small island.

This is a cinematic tribute to the action movies of the 80’s when most of these guys had not yet seen the plastic surgeon’s scalpel. And by that, I mean, in their 50’s and 60’s, these guys can still knock any Joe’s block off.

The roster of California based Expendables include Mickey Rourke, Steve Austin, Randy Couture, Jet Li, and Dolph Lundgren. Executive producer, co-writer, and director Stallone shares the lead with Jason Statham.

As the crew assembles in a way too-cool tattoo parlor accommodating their glistening choppers, this fellowship of man reveals that strength and killing skills are accompanied by heart and soul, a good sense of humor facing death, and a respect for women. Of course, you must overlook the brothel brigade of girlfriends that a dread-locked cowboy-hat-wearing Rourke carouses, because deep inside he is actually the sensitive type.

The screen gleams with ever more charisma with a bit of Bruce Willis and the governator, Arnold Schwarzenegger. The genius in the casting is giving actors the role in what makes them the specimens that they are. Schwarzenegger saunters off with an arrogant swagger as Sly jibes his real life political hopes, Jet Li karate chops, Rourke is the suave lady killer, Austin and Couture deliver physical punishment, and the guy that Rourke beckoned Hollywood to give a second chance to last awards season, Eric Roberts, plays the sleazy smarmy ex-CIA agent with zeal. Jason Statham has a wider range of emotions to convey and does so with his British accent.

Every cent of this big budgeted picture is visible. Beautiful aerials, explosions, sexy choppers, art department perfect tattoo parlor, giant explosions, choreographed fighting and chase scenes, excellent decapitations and occasional unsightly body mutilations, and enormous explosions, accompanied with a great rock soundtrack.

Shot in the U.S. and Brazil, the mammoth sized credits demonstrate the actual monster that this picture was to put together. This may be a story told before and there may be a cliché or two, but it is enjoyable and fun and would make a great Blu Ray gift for a home theater maniac.

In the end, Stallone saves the day and forgoes the tropical cliff side embrace with the young “chiquita en problemas” possibly because the audience frowns upon AARP carrying-card members making out with females 36 years younger. That’s real class.

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2 Responses »

  1. The Expendables was everything I hoped it would be! Can’t wait to see it again!

  2. I love Sly! I’ll see anything pic that he is in. Great review.

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