Born of nostalgia, some of the worst mistakes. So, how am I? It’s been a while. Well, I’ve my last Brain Care Specialist appointment for the year tomorrow morning, I was a Groomsmen on the weekend at friends wedding, and to top it all off, I made it through my speech without crying, something I did *not* accomplish at the first readthrough of it the night before. Bombshells continues to be delightful – next session they’ll be taking an orphanage worth of children to see one of the PC’s latest movie. There is nothing that can go wrong. I have no idea where Doctor Who is going, but I’m loving the current series. It’s been difficult keeping things spoiler free, as wife hasn’t seen it and I do not want to be the one responsible for spoiling things. Between being wrecked from work and a lacklustre night of sleep, I didn’t make it to sword tonight. I should be asleep, and yet I’m here typing. But what’s the mistake I made that I’m so compelled to write about? Well…
GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra popped up on Netflix. I remember seeing it in the cinema, and not thinking much. The sequel was improved, but more on that later. Anyhow, the brain isn’t great, the resistance is low and I hit play. I’ve made worse mistakes in my time (Seeing Max Payne comes to mind), but this stands among them. I remembered it wasn’t great, but only in going back again did it unleash just how bad it is. Let’s begin shall we?
First off, who made the choice to put lips on Snake Eye’s mask? I’d love to know the design process behind that. The Bat-Nipples were strange, but it was the 90’s. It’s not much of an excuse, but it’s something.
Secondly, making a 23 minute toy commercial and trying to make it all gritty and serious, something that’s also plagued the Transformers films. Look, the cartoon was absurd and over the top, what was the harm in trying for that tone? Does everything need to be gritty and serious? Can we not have fun watching a Batman film?
Marlon Wayans ‘acting’, and I use the term loosely, is an acquired taste, one that a notoriously picky eater like myself has refused to acquire. In his defence, I’ve only seen him in two things, this and Dungeons and Dragons, and neither is exactly a showcase for his… talents.
The underwater battle at the end of the film, that wants to be a nautical Return of the Jedi but turns out more like Thunderball.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt spends most of his screen time buried under prosthetics and while he’s going for full ham, it just doesn’t work. Chris Latta left some very big shoes to fill.
Sienna Miller tries, but lacks the accent for the Baroness. And tying her into Duke’s backstory makes things needlessly convoluted and coincidental. So, you’re telling me this grunt’s ex is now being mind controlled by the bad guy, who’s also her brother who the grunt thought he failed to save? That level of coincidence only happens in bad comics, and occasionally in games I run.
The good, and there is… some:
Every time Storm Shadow loses his shirt. Lee Byung-hun isn’t quite my cup of tea, but damn…
I spent the time during Brendan Fraser and Kevin J O’Conner’s cameos thinking of a much better Stephen Sommers film I could be watching. Speaking of that film, Arnold Vosloo looks to be having the most fun out of any of the cast in this film, which given that Channing Tatum, Christopher Ecclestone and Sienna Miller (who hadn’t known they made a second one) have nothing positive to say doesn’t seen that hard. Ecclestone does manage to sound Scottish at times though, which is more than Destro ever managed in the cartoon.
Is it bad and should you watch it? Yes and No. It’s not Transformers; Revenge of the Fallen, but I’ve taken shots to the knackers more pleasant than that film. Now, to speak of the sequel… 2013’s GI Joe: Retaliation still isn’t a good film, but it’s a vastly more entertaining one. Jettisoning most of the cast of the first film (The only returning cast being Ray Park (Snake Eyes), Jonathan Pryce (The President/Zartan), Byung-hun and Tatum) and adds The Rock, who A: is aware of what sort of film he’s in and what the audience want, that being him shooting giant guns and showing off his arms. It also mostly discards the gritty tone for a more over the top feel, best illustrated by the sequence that has groups of colour coded ninjas having sword fights while swinging from mountains. Jonathan Pryce spends most of his time chewing the scenery, which nicely makes up for Bruce Willis mostly sleepwalking through it. All in all, it’s just more fun, and that’s what I wanted. I went in hoping for a stupid action movie and I got one.
it is now long past time for sleep. Good night all. Be seeing you….