Review : G.I Joe: Retaliation (2013)
"Do you have what it takes?"
Released (UK) 27th March 2013, Rated 12A. Runtime: 110 minutes (1 hours, 50 minutes).
Official Synopsis: The G.I. Joes are not only fighting their mortal enemy Cobra; they are forced to contend with threats from within the government that jeopardize their very existence.
Red Corner Review, by Lisa
Added April 14th, 2013
Oh dear. Oh dear. Where does one start on a review for this film? Well, it’s bad. If you haven’t seen it and if you want a mindless blowing stuff up, butch muscle bound ‘hell yeah’ with a blended bit of comic book sillyness thrown in this film may just be the one for you. Sadly I actually like a bit of plot and a bit of plot development to my films and so I was severely disappointed with this outing, though there was a suspicion that I may from the outset.
I was pleasantly surprised that they had the foresight to get rid of Channing Tatum within the first 30 mins of the film. I admit it made me hope, just a tad that the Rock and Bruce could pull this film back. The jokes are bad, in a bad way and there is awful buddy backslapping bromance and cheese galore. Nothing makes sense. No one bothered to read the plot or watch the edit to see if it actually all worked together. Because it didn’t. There was clearly money galore spent on this film, with some serious stunts going on. Some of the action sequences felt too long and drawn out. Though from a CGI perspective I didn’t have anything to complain about per say.
A bunch of subplots are what could be loosely described as woven together. We have the Joes who are bent on revenge for the destruction of their brethren. We have Stormshadow (Byung-hun Lee) with his capture and supposed redemption. We have Lady Jaye (Adrianne Palicki). Don’t even get me started on her stupid name – everyone just calls her Jaye and it’s obvious by the surgerically enhance mounds that she is indeed a lady. I digress, Jaye has daddy issues and tries hard to be one of the boys to make her daddy proud (snore, zzzzzz) ’cause he never saw her be a Joe. We also have Jinx (Storm Shadow’s cousin (so? snore, zzzzzzz)) trained up in the way of the the blind karate dude. He ain’t no Mr. Miyagi, I tell you that. She will help get revenge on Storm Shadow for his betrayal of the master. I think she has two lines or something. Pointless.
Now let us turn our attention to the prison break aspect of the film. The was the low point of the film for me. A maximum security prison where two people are, for some reason, paralysed and suspended in goo in a suit. Ridiculous. Right, so even though they are in prison they are paralysed on the outside, but on the inside they are awake and can communicate using their eyes. They think they arrested Snake Eyes but, let’s face it, anyone could be Snake Eyes – just put on that suit and that’s it. Ta da! No one seems to care about this. When the really irritating and psychopathic warden (creepy Walter Goggins) taunts the prisoner we know he will be in for a comeuppance, just as we know since he mentions the supercooler heater, we know there will be an explosion. I find that I am struggling even to write a summary of this low plot points because of the sheer ridiculousness of it is crashing over me in waves as I type.
So this prison scene, where maximum security prisoners are allowed to stay in superhero suits, when samurai swords are allowed in the tank containment room, where there are no proper security protocols and where prisoners are referred to as Cobra Commander and Destro instead of Bob Wilson or Mike Smith or whatever. Also, don’t get me started on the Cobra takeover of the White House and the Cobra badges emblazoned on the secret service replacements. We are to expect no one would catch on to this? Pointless! and in my opinion insulting to the viewing audience to be frank. On many occasions I cradled my head in my hands. People actually pay money to see a film. Real money. Have some respect!!! I think it says it all that Director Jon M. Chu‘s last project was pop tweenie bopper Justin Beiber Documentary.
Not even the Rock (who I love) and Bruce Willis (who I also love) could save this soporific film for me. Their presence results in the entire score I have given the film. There was just no reason why this film shouldn’t have been better. It was a straight out pile of plop. How they persuaded Willis and The Rock to sign on with that script is a mystery (it could have benefited from The Rock laying the smacketh down on all their studio candy asses). Thank god for The Rock’s bulging physique which allowed me to focus some of my attention on screen and stopped me from trying to gouge out my own eyes and filling my ears with popcorn. I admit there was a bit of a surprise that there was a sequel to start with as I didn’t think the first one had done so well. We actually saw the first GI Joe outing in the cinema and my faded memory of it was that it was nowhere near as disjointed or bad as this outing. Hopefully we shall be spared a third outing.