I’m not sure why I even bother anymore, but I did. It was a long flight back to Singapore from Nagoya (I managed to squeeze 3 films in The Expendables 3, Rurouni Kenshin: Densetsu no Saigo-hen and Lucy), and I didn’t want to watch a good film on that tiny screen with crappy audio.
Of course, the first thing that stood out as the film started was the bad CGI. It’s so characteristic of The Expendables I wonder if their entire budget is dedicated to paying the actors. Seriously, CGI has gotten insanely good these days. Just look at the work Marvel is doing. And you’re feeding me this crap that someone can probably do without the million-dollar budgets you have?
Also characteristic of the entire Expendables series is the wooden acting, the bad script and terrible dialogue. There were some moments that deserved a short chuckle, but otherwise, everything was Michael Bay-esque. The foreshadowing for Caesar’s injury was so blatant, and there are so many pointless bits of the film dedicated just to introduce the new members, all of whom are unknown to me. The series was built on old action stars that are instantly recognisable. Bringing in fresh, young faces just disrupts the entire premise.
Not to mention the terrible way the plot went about creating the tension to bring about the ‘need’ to hire new faces, said new faces being ‘integral’ to that final mission AKA the film’s climax. Seriously, why can’t you just do the same damn thing as in the first two movies? It would have been a damn sight better than the bullshit served up this time. Hell, in the end the old-timers were the more entertaining; the newbies were just…there. It was so awkward it made me cringe.
Also, the inclusion of Ronda Roussey as a female Expendable was awful. Not that I have a problem with strong female leads (which I’ll gush about in my review for Lucy), but it was pretty clear it’s a publicity stunt. Her acting was bad, her scenes were horribly scripted, her introduction was almost entirely CGI-ed to the point where it felt like the movie was compensating for her real-life inability to fight (when she’s a MMA fighter). All that terrible flirting moments, and her sort-of misandry served to only reinforce female (and male) stereotypes, which ultimately defeats the purpose of her inclusion in a testosterone-fuelled series.
The only good thing to come out of that film is a new appreciation for Mel Gibson and Antonio Banderas. Gibson was a pretty good villain, which was sorely missing in the first two movies. I wouldn’t call it a career revival, but it’s nice to see some decent acting that I’ve only ever seen from Mickey Rourke in the series. As for Antonio Banderas, he played a pretty good comic relief, and a far more complex character than I would have expected from such a film.
I really don’t know why I bother so much with this stinking pile of crap. I have got to stop watching terrible movies.