(SPOILER WARNING!!! This article does contain spoilers, if you haven’t seen the movie, just see the first paragraph to be informed without spoilers!!!)
The Expendables 3 is not as good as the the second one, but not as bad as the first movie, it can satisfy the 80’s nostalgia with it’s action, one liners, and old movie quotes restated again, but this was probably the weakest in story of this trilogy which went out off its course. 3 out of 5 Stars.
The Expendables franchise I have a love/hate relationship with. Before the first movie came out, I was actually excited for this movie. A movie that will pay homage to the 80’s action movies and their action stars. However, the movie was a disappointment to me, mainly because it was executed and directed poorly. When the second movie came out with a new director and what not, the movie was actually better, a lot better. The second was the movie I expected for the first one. So the sequel actually redeemed itself. With this third movie coming up, I didn’t know what to expect. I’m excited for the new actors coming in, but could it be more of the same thing, which is a bad thing. So I decided to sit back and enjoy the this movie. I will start with what I liked, to the so so, to what I didn’t like.
What I liked, the movie is what you expected. A movie that pays homage to the 80’s action movie. You get plenty of that, and it will satisfy your 80’s appetite. As far as the acting goes you get the same old chemistry with the original Expendable gang with their sarcastic attitudes and their great teamwork on the war field. Some of the new guys I liked was Wesley Snipes (fresh out of jail) playing Doctor Death. It was good seeing Snipes back in film, and what better way for him to get back by playing a mercenary straight out of jail. I also liked how they made fun of him about his tax evasion jail sentence, and Snipes was a good sport about it. In the movie he played the awkward out of prison guy that hadn’t lost his touch with being a member of the The Expendables showing why he is important to Barney Ross, played by Sylvester Stallone. He just blended right in with the rest of the crew, which grew some resentment from Christmas, played by Jason Statham. Harrison Ford played Max Drummer, a guy written in to replace Bruce Willis’ character as Church. He wasn’t as intimidating as Church, but seeing him flying that helicopter was pretty BA if you ask me, and he shows that he is having fun doing it. Glen Powell playing Thorn is one of the new younger guys to be a part of the Expendables crew. He showed why he is valuable to the team with his tech savvyness which the team desperately needed. Although briefly there, Kelsey Grammar playing Bonaparte, as a guy who helps recruit mercenaries for Barney was fun to watch as well. Lastly, my new favorite in The Expendables group was Antonio Banderas playing Galgo. At first I thought his character was stereotypically too much for my liking, but he was definitely the comic relief as a skilled soldier that annoyingly talks too much. He kind of reminds me of a milder Deadpool. The things Galgo be saying and how ADDish he is was definitely the funniest part of the movie, yet he can still kick butt.
The so so, the action started off really suspect. The beginning scene’s special effects look like it came from a VHS 80’s movie. Maybe director Patrick Hughes was saving money for the final action scene, cuz it did get better from that. It was good to see Jet Li as Ying Yang back, but was a little disappointed there was no kung fu fights with him, only him shooting guns from a helicopter. Kellen Lutz playing new Expendable recruit John Smiley was developed well, but the developed didn’t really portray to the story, so his role was confusing for me. With that said, it was cool seeing his character driving a motorcycle and Fast and Furiousishly flew off a steep ramp to get up on the building. Lastly, Mel Gibson playing the villain, Stonebanks, was subpar to me. A former Expendable gone bad cliche. Don’t get me wrong, he was good as the intimidating shot caller, but after that he was blah and you wanted him to get shot. He didn’t look like he had a chance to beat Barney one one one hand fighting, but the movie made him hold his ground which I thought was stupid. Maybe I’m the only one that thought was a little ironic that Caesar, played by Terry Crews, was the one that almost was shot dead by Mel Gibson character given his past racist rampages.
What I didn’t like, the story was probably the weakest in the whole franchise so far. It was the formulaic same old sequel story cliche to try to bring in new characters. The fact that Barney tried to call his old team out, and bring in younger people that didn’t work and got themselves kidnapped, only to predictably bring his old crew back to save and stop Stonebanks. (Sigh) The movie was that predictable. Maybe if the new crew was good, I wouldn’t mind it, but the movie runs the risk of recruiting UFC fighters to act which didn’t work out. Ronda Rousey playing Luna, although she is beautiful in that one scene at the club, her being like the boy’s personality and horrible acting just made horrible. What is even worse was Victor Ortiz, playing Mars, acting. It seemed his lines were re recorded, and edited in horribly. I also believe that the movie may have cut down a lot of his talking scenes to as little as possible. Ortiz’s acting makes Dolph Lundgren, playing Gunner Jenson, look like Tom Cruise, and that is saying something cuz Lundgren always sounds retarded when he speaks. Also what is up with that final scene with Ying Yang and Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character, Trench, looking like they are flirting with each other? Can you say awkward?
Overall, this movie was mediocre at best. It’s not the worst of the franchise, but not the best either. It does give some old action stars a last chance to act and have some fun. At least that is a joy to watch for these old farts!!! Final Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars.