Sly Stallone and company are back for round 2 of The Expendables. The movie poster is as over-the-top as the movie itself is; take note of everyone on there shooting something. So there’s no doubt what you’re getting in this film, much as the first one – gun porn.
The script is what it is – an easy paycheck for our favorite band of misfit mercs goes haywire, the wrong person dies, and it’s vengeance served with a healthy helping of bullets, knives, anything that explodes, and copious one-liners from the action heroes that uttered them in the first place. This ain’t Shakespeare baby, and I can’t say that I cared. It was an enjoyable, explosive romp that doesn’t require thinking. It only requires the ability to enjoy watching stuff blow up on the big screen repeatedly and I certainly hope that anyone that walks into the theater knows that.
The action is great and well done although Jet Li isn’t in here long enough. The obligatory martial-arts expert substitute does an admirable job considering the shoes she has to fill. Seeing Stallone and Van Damme square off is good fun while Statham turns in his usual dynamic fight scenes as well, the knife work is a nice touch too. And since we’re on the subject of the lineup, let’s go down the list: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Chuck Norris, Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Terry Crew, Randy Courture, Nan Yu, and Liam Hemsworth. Whew!
It’s well shot, well directed, and bloody as hell. The effects and explosions are a blast to watch. There was only one stunt they pulled that was actually ridiculous enough to pull me out of my state of delirious suspension of disbelief (I say delirious because a film like this requires a higher level of disbelief than a standard film). The stunt involves their plane and a mine, that’s all I say, you’ll have to see it for yourself.
See this one in the theater if you like action flicks, it’s worth it just for the Chuck Norris scenes alone.
reviewed by Sean McKnight