Midnight Movie Review – G.I. Joe: Retaliation

I write this with a heavy heart: the new G.I. JOE movie sucks.GIJoe2

I went to see the midnight showing (that was actually at 9pm. Remember when you used to have to wait until midnight for a midnight showing of a movie on opening weekend?).

I am pretty much biting my tongue completely off not to give away the hugest of all spoilers in G.I. Joe: Retaliation. Although to be honest, I wish someone would’ve just told me. I think I could’ve relaxed and enjoyed the movie a bit more.  But probably not much more.

So what’s wrong with the movie exactly? Take your pick: it’s disjointGIJoeTheRocked, bland, and tension-less – just kind of big and dumb.  Will my 9- and 10-year-old sons like it? Oh heck yeah. After all, there are lots of fight scenes and raining ninjas and blowing shit up. (I give it a very soft PG-13, for any parents who might be wondering – it really could’ve almost gone PG)

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Palicki’s Lady Jaye

But I was hoping for more…something.  More anything but absurd action. After all, these characters are pretty holy to me – I grew up on G.I. Joe. In South Florida, running around as the only girl in a neighborhood of boys, we played G.I. Joe all the time. I was Lady Jaye.  I know these characters and love them, but the film? Not so much.

There were some good things about the movie. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson brought his normal charming blend of charisma and swagger as Roadblock. Bruce Willis is gleeful as the original General Joe.  Channing Tatum and D.J. Cotrona are both hot (although Cotrona’s Flint left me pretty cold). Adrianne Palicki played my namesake Lady Jaye with as much flair as could be mustered for a pretty one-dimensional role.GIJoeSnakeEyes

And Snake Eyes? Well, he’s still the most bad-ass mother fucker on the planet, isn’t he? And without ever saying a word. Ray Parks communicates all he needs to by leaving a string of dead and unconscious bodies in his wake.

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Would’ve been better off using this doll

The bad stuff I’ve pretty much already pointed out. But I would be neglect in my duty if I didn’t mention the mind-numbingly awful performance of RZA from Wu-Tang. He makes an appearance as the “Blind Master” about half way through the film and single-handedly kills all the momentum in the movie. Seriously. Screeching halt.

Not that it had a great deal of true momentum to begin with, but whatever it had was gone by the time RZA finished with his scene.

True Joe fans will be disappointed by this film. They can’t help but be. Non-Joe fans may not care as much. As a silly action movie, G.I. Joe: Retaliation is not really too bad. But not really too good either.

Now you know.  And knowing is…well, you know.

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Shirt of the Day: Big, Goddamn 8-bit Heroes

Shit, Ript. Let’s make a deal. You stop making insanely awesome t-shirts and I’ll make sure I can feed myself and my family for a few days.

No? No good?

OK – then you should probably make more of these insane pop-culture mash-ups quick before I use up all the cash I’m going to get selling my kidney on the black market.

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You know the deal folks – 24 hours. Click here. You buy.

Pepper Potts Does Spoilery Things in the Latest IM 3 Spot

Iron Man 3Can it be a spoiler if it’s in a trailer? In this era of revealing every possible plot element before the movie releases, is it even possible to remain unspoiled anymore?

The video is after the jump just in case you’ve decided to go on an IM rumor embargo. But I will say this.

…DiMuzio is about to be very disappointed. Continue reading

G.I. Joe: Retaliation Extended Clip Makes it Rain Ninjas

G.I. Joe is a uniquely screwed up property, in a way that only cartoons born in the 80s can be. There’s a cornucopia of increasingly improbable military vehicles (it’s a tank AND a helicopter!), a rainbow selection of unnecessarily specialized operatives (So what if you’ve got a boxer, hypnotist, and alligator handler? We’ve got a comedian, wrestler, and football player!), and ninjas.

Ninjas by the dozen! Ninjas of every hue (including pink…really)! Ninjas with armor that’s so heavy, they’re samurai! Ninjas who don’t speak! Ninjas who wear only white! Ninjas who consistently and successfully wield knives at gun fights!

What I’m getting at is that, if you’re really going to send a love letter to the original cartoon and do it right, you’re going to have to get some “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” mixed in with your “Platoon.”

Lucky for us, the current creative team seems to get it IN SHURIKEN.

Movie Quote Monday

My wife ran her fourth marathon yesterday. Thus I had to go with a running quote, right? It’s the most popular running movie line ever. Side note – I detest this movie. I’ve been told that’s because I have no soul. Perhaps. Or, I hate it because it is awful tripe. But both are possible answers. Anyway:

I was running…

Put more quotes below (or tell me why I’m wrong about this movie (but I’m not.))

Friday Diversion: Much Ado About Whedon

Back in 1993 Kenneth Branagh made Shakespeare cool. Well, to me he did. “Much Ado About Nothing” was the first truly “accessible” Shakespeare movie I had seen. Not sure if that was Branagh or the Bard, but “Much Ado” remains one of my favorite films.

As such, the Whedon remake intrigues and scares me. I rather he covered ground I didn’t find sacred. Do “Taming of the Shrew” or “12th Night.” But, I’ll live. Especially as I love how/why this film was made. Whedon and friends sit around every weekend drinking and reading Shakespeare. Why not film it?

First, onto the Diversion and the trailer:

First, before people calling me a Whedon Hater, I love, LOVE 95% of this trailer. I love the look. I love the music. I love the Black and White with hints of color. I love the arrangement of Whedon cast. I love hearing the dialogue I heard in the Branagh version. If someone new can crack humorous Shakespearean dialogue it should be Joss. And, even though he doesn’t speak in the trailer, Nathan Fillion should KILL as Dogberry (he’d be a better Benedict  but I’ll take what I can get).

What I didn’t like…don’t kill me Internet world but…

1) I’m not a fan of Amy Acker. Thus her being Beatrice doesn’t excite me. HOWEVER, she does pretty well in the trailer. So, right now this is a “pass.” I’ll hold judgement but not count anything against it.

2) The big problem is watching Alexis Denisof chew Shakespearean dialogue like a kid in my High School drama class. He doesn’t deliver any line (in the trailer) with any naturalism  It is all clunky. Nothing seems fluid. NOW, that might be fault of the trailer. “Much Ado” features rapid-fire dialogue  Chopping it up for the trailer may take it so out of context that it loses all ebb and flow. I hope so. I loved Denisof in “Angel” and have always been shocked he didn’t break into anything more after it (I assume his stints on “How I Met Your Mother” were gained by sleeping with a star).

On the double plus side, it’ll be nice to finally see Fred and Wes get together.

After Earth: Will Smith’s “Cypher” Has Ironically Undecipherable Accent

Seriously, what is Will Smith’s accent supposed to be? Southern? British? Erudite? South Afrikaner? At least Jaden just goes for a low-hanging-fruit “North Florida Southern.”

I want to be intrigued by this movie; but I can’t seem to build much nerd fire for it. Still, it’s refreshing seeing a post-apocalyptic movie where the future isn’t dominated by short white guys and transparently pale women. Some of the science seems dubious; but I’ll give that a pass too as long as Shyamalan doesn’t throw some idiotic twist in the last quarter of the movie (THE MONSTERS ARE US! WE DID IT! WE BLEW UP! YOU DAMN DIRTY NEO-SMILODONS!). As is, this looks to be a very straight forward sci-fi action-adventure that could be worth plunking down a few bucks to escape the heat this summer.