When it comes to toyslines turned film franchises, there are few like G.I. Joe. While Transformer might be more well known due to the constant flood of television shows and movies there is certain charm to Joe. G.I. Joe even spawned its own bad feature film with G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. Now the 3Ded sequel G.I. Joe: Retaliation is here, but is it a promotion or just as FUBARed as the last film?
G.I. Joe: Retaliation stars current WWE Champion (until Super Cena wins it back at Wrestlemania) Dwayne Johnson as fan favourite character Roadblock as he and Lady Jaye (Adrianne Palicki), Flint (D.J. Cotrona) and Snake Eyes (Ray Park) try to avenge there fallen Joes after Zartan (Arnold Vosloo), posing as the President of the United States (Jonathan Pryce), orders their termination after declaring them a terrorist organization.
Over the course of the movie new characters are introduced such as Cobra’s demolitions expert Firefly (Ray Stevenson), original Joe General Joseph Colton (Bruce Willis), tech expert Mouse (Joseph Mazzello), female ninja Jinx (Elodie Yung) and even the Blind Master played by RZA…am the only one who finds that kind of offensive?
The film both tries to make you forget and remember Rise of Cobra by picking and choosing the elements of the last film that were good. For example, both Cobra Commander (Luke Bracey in the suit and Robert Baker Voice) and Destro (who is in the film for two minutes before probably getting killed for no reason) were captured off-screen and Storm Shadow (Lee Byung-hun) and Zartan are left at large but the movie seems to leave out the whole Cobra blowing up Paris thing (not like that was a big action scene in the last film or anything).
However, there is one big question that is raised by this whole reboot thing.
If everyone knows that Cobra Commander is evil and that he Commands Cobra (hence the name), then why doesn’t anyone freak out when the President replaces the Joe’s with Cobra as America’s black ops group, 30 minutes into the movie? Did everyone forget the whole being evil thing?
The Joes have to regroup and find the real president and stop Cobra Commander from taking over the world.
While the premise is very dumb, it could be held together by it’s foundations, such as it’s good writing, editing and direction. However, this film lacks two of those things.
The film was edited by two people, Roger Barton and Jim May, and was at times way to fast and confusing. A great example of this happened during the presidential ball scene where things just kind of happen with no real explanation or idea of flow. Lady Jaye just shows up, dances and disappears like she’s friggin’ Batman. Other times the editing is fine, making me think that maybe they ran out of time to finish the movie despite taking eight more months to work on the movie.
Another knock on the film is it’s writing, it so damn chessey. Writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick pack in too many clichés into two hours. From a daughter trying to make her dead father happy to a villain changing his colours to get his poorly explained revenge, this film has it all.
Despite the editing and writing the direction isn’t that bad. While director Jon M. Chu has only directed films such as Justin Bieber: Never Say Never he proves that he can shoot action scenes that are clean and make sense. Some of the fight chorography is dumb i.e. the final fight between Roadblock and Firefly, but its fun and easy to follow.
While I didn’t see the movie in 3D, I would like to point out that this movie is fine without it. There were maybe two or three moments that would of made sense in 3D but save your money and see it in 2D.
So is this a good movie? Not really, it’s dumb, poorly paced and features a number of plot holes but it’s kind of fun.
There are a number of moments that made me laugh due to the sheer stupidity of the film (namely the image of Snake Eyes standing in a kitchen, he stands out like a burning man at Seaworld) but it’s G.I. Joe what do you expect?
If your not looking for a serious film and want to kill two hours in a theater this one is ok.
G.I. Joe: Retaliation is based upon a toyline owned by Hasbro. The film was made by Skydance Productions, di Bonaventura Pictures and Hasbro. Distribution was handled by Paramount Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.