Review: G.I. Joe Retaliation - A Real American Zero
Living the Stuck in the '80s lifestyle as I do, it's hard to find time to hit up the cineplex for new movies. Umm, even though there's literally a theater 20 yards from my office. Seriously. But thankfully, longtime Stuck in the '80s friend and correspondent Chris Stainton fell on the grenade this week and watched G.I. Joe: Retaliation. Here's his guest review.
Since we are in the wave of '80s animated series turned into live action movies (I am anxiously awaiting the Thundercats if any studio can make something decent), I took one for the team and went to see the new G.I. Joe installment, G.I. Joe: Retaliation.
If "Knowing is Half the Battle" - please, be prepared. Spoiler alert: Plot - Zartan impersonates the President who then orders the destruction of the GI.Joe team. With GI. Joe out of the way, Cobra can take over the world. If you saw the trailer, you saw the best part.
Out of the 3 big hunk actors: Channing Tatum, The Rock, and Bruce Willis, only Dwayne Johnson is in it for the length of the film. Channing is thankfully killed off in the first 12 minutes, and Bruce is in it for the last. All the main "actors" (except maybe Byung-hun Lee, playing Storm Shadow) phoned in their performances.
Seriously, I don't even want to call them actors in this flick, more like actual action figures. Channing was bad, the Rock was lame, even Bruce Willis was on auto-pilot. The director, Jon M. Chu should be removed from the Directors Guild of America. I wonder if he was even on set during the shooting. If the directing and acting is so sub-par, there is no point in wasting dialogue on useless character development. The two "writers" need to take a community college course on screenwriting. They all should be ashamed of themselves as they cash their checks at the bank.
The only saving grace was the effects department. The visuals were excellent, but they couldn't carry the "film." '80s Nostalgia was in full tilt from all the GI Joe and Cobra vehicles featured. They did a good job recreating them from the cartoon and toy store shelves. As Jeff in Cuba/Germany said, "The movie sounds like an accurate reflection of the actual toys: cool vehicles driven by emotionless plastic soldiers." Jeff pretty much nailed it.
Save yourself some money, SIT80s nation, and if you absolutely have to see it, head to Toys R Us and get your own figures and vehicles, and make the film yourself with an iPhone. It would most assuredly be better.