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Reviews for G.I. Joe: Retaliation ( 2013 )

Plenty of great visuals and action but not much story. (IMDB: 7)

On: 9/9/2013 12:00:00 AM By: Jan Strydom
This second G.I JOE film doesn't have much in terms of a well thought out plot but it does have some great visuals and is packed with loads of well staged action sequences so action movie buffs should have a blast. For those also seeking more of a character story it's still best to look somewhere else.

The acting is however surprisingly good given the film's plot. Dwayne Johnson and Channing Tatum both bring a certain likability to their characters and I enjoyed watching them the most and of course Adrianne Palicki who was very friendly on the eyes.

Overall, The film might not have much of a plot but the great visuals and the well made action sequences keep it from becoming a total bore. Those who want more of a character driven plot might not think very much of it.

If you don't expect much, you might like it. (IMDB: 6)

On: 3/30/2013 12:00:00 AM By: naregian
As a film buff, I love seeing films alone on Saturday afternoons or Friday nights. As as result of my frequent attendance, I have come to know not to expect much from action blockbuster films. Yes, you get your usual incomprehensible hand-to-hand fights, buildings exploding and enemy gunfire as inaccurate as ever, with the inevitably minimal plot and screenplay. As the ending credits rolled, I stood up thinking "ehhh". The film definitely had some amazingly entertaining action sequences and awesome special effects, but you know, you can't really be THAT amazed with an action film. Not gonna lie, the screenplay in this film was pretty well written, and it included quite a few pleasantly surprising laughs. Dwayne Johnson has a big few months ahead of him with the release of Snitch (which I give a 7/10), the next Fast and Furious movie, and Pain & Gain. With this film, he did reinforce his true acting credentials, even though not much notable acting is observed in such a genre. All in all, if you're expecting something like Olympus Has Fallen, you might be dissatisfied. If you go in like me, with no true expectations other than hoping for some entertainment, you might like what you see.

Stale Explosions (IMDB: 5)

On: 3/30/2013 12:00:00 AM By: Mek Torres
G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra feels like it belongs to a different age of blockbusters. It had a hard time fitting in to the modern generation thus most moviegoers never find it as appealing as the other films that was released on that year. Those rants can be true only in some reasons. The film is undeniably silly and dumb but it was never boring and has its own quality. Since people are now asking for darker and much serious blockbusters, this sequel reduces all the silliness that was displayed on the original. G.I. Joe: Retaliation is cooler and less cartoony. Unfortunately, it is also less exciting and terribly uninspired. The action may be better looking but the lack of fortitude and creativity made it fall short into another visual showcase stress.

"Awesome" is the main goal of this sequel. While the original was too corny to impress, this film darkens the tone and made it a bit down to earth. It abandons the silly gadgets and the ridiculous laws of physics that was shown in the original. But the film fails to be both dark and realistic. Not only because of those robotic fireflies and the mass annihilating missiles but the secret prisons and the government are unbelievably dumb to manage their job. Well, it's a blockbuster based on toys so it will never be too realistic. Deal with it while we are here for the fun. The dark aspects aren't dark at all. What they only do is to be serious. This seriousness blocks the potential joy and turns it into standard blockbuster bland.

The storytelling is quite messy. It's like an uninteresting version of Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol with uninteresting characters. The storytelling from the first movie wasn't great either since it is cluttered with cheesy flashbacks. But it's worse here because it takes some twists that are absurdly incoherent. And so, it's all pretentious. The characters are boring and even the performances can't bring them to life. Dwayne Johnson is the only good thing among them though, Bruce Willis is trying to make fun of himself again as a crazy grandaddy, and the villains ham it up which isn't suppose to be a bad thing but they can't give enough personality to them.

The action scenes are acceptable enough to call awesome at least. With all the explosions and the none CGI-ed machines, it seems to be really exciting, but it's not. It does a fine job to be pretty but there's a difference between good looking and exciting. There's only a little suspense. If there is actually suspense and joy then it would be found at the mountain ninja fight but it's just mild and still glosses some slow motions in it. For the rest of the action, the heroes are always superior. Plus more explosions and slow-mos. The action is stylishly directed anyway. The fight between Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow remains to be the only action that excites and one part of the climax has a nutty scene with The Rock riding huge vehicles and shooting like a badass. The production designs, special effects, and costumes gets better. What else to talk about it?

The absence of the Joes' ridiculous transportation and weapons, holograms, and other snazzy gadgets may please our modern viewers but it also forgets why this material is interesting anyway. Now we only get typical military stuff. It still has some crazy devices but it's limited compare to the first film. Rise of Cobra wasn't a classic. It's nothing more than a simple guilty pleasure. Same with Retaliation except this one can't even be completely pleasurable unless you want some endless visual coolness. Cool is not a bad thing but it could have been creative and much more exciting instead of showing off slow-mos on screen. To be fair, it's mildly entertaining and good to look at. If the film wasn't this visually awesome, it would have been an empty cinema. The series still fails to justify its source material.

What happened to movie? G.I. Joe: Retaliation is ALL BRAWN, and NO BRAIN. (IMDB: 1)

On: 3/28/2013 12:00:00 AM By: HeartMonger
It's amazing how many good movies produced this year have been relegated to sub-par status, while others that shouldn't be given a glance are given zenith status as great pieces of work, art, and other such pop-cultural sub- standard excrescences achieve more than their worth in fool's gold. One such picture - I'm sorry - movie, that audiences will endure a release of, either glorifyingly, or harshly, is G.I. Joe: Retaliation, the new brawn packed action farce from Paramount Pictures.

Starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, and with appearances by Bruce Willis and Channing Tatum, the film offers no social commentary, consists of nothing remotely engaging (I tended to doze off on even the action scenes), and pities itself with egregious CGI 3-D effects that disappear mid-air depending on where one sits in the audience. There is no basis for being an audience member, because the effects are so jarring, that the viewer will not be able to involve itself to anything worth sitting for an hour and forty minutes for (which trust me, there wouldn't be anyway.) But that's not the half of the film's problems.

The real problem stems from lack of plot. More like no plot. The film is supposed to be a sequel, or rather, a continuation of the original G.I. Joe: Rise of the Cobra, but even by todays standards, the filmmakers weren't trying to mark any new ground. All we get is one action sequence after another. Even James Cameron knows you need a through-line of plot device to make these kinds of movies work, but director Jon M. Chu doesn't have enough respect for the audience to even give them that. Instead, we are mindlessly treated to fast shots of punches being thrown, with no idea who is throwing them, why, or if we should care.

Seriously. We only know one thing. The good guys will always win. Never a good sign when you go to the movies to know how they end, with no conscious minding of what it will take to get there. Don't waste your money, my friends. Still, more muscular contractions ache this bastard of a performer.

Those involved knew this was just a paycheck - examine the evidence; Dennis Quaid did not return, and subsequently they need Bruce Willis to carry the big name legacy. Channing Tatum has his screen time terminally reduced, not a great sign because most audiences will probably be wanting to see the film solely for his performance. The writer was clearly hired to write a how-to on perfecting scripts for CGI based stories. This wouldn't be such an insult to film purists and enthusiasts alike if it wasn't such a dreary waste of time and money. There is nothing there in terms of story or structure. The movie starts, and it's action scenes strung together with no link. Then you leave. I would disclose such a plot to entice what viewers may challenge the notion of wasting their money if such a plot existed! It's a disgusting practice of show-off acrobatics by computer geniuses that would be better suited decrypting or ciphering codes left behind from the Zodiac Killer or the Unabomber! This is not why we go to the movies. We go to be entertained, and I predict that many an audience member be robbed of their hard earned cash in this recession, and by such standards and caused an equal recession in film quality! Honestly, there has to be a better place for films in today being tomorrow's history, than this!

An early release for such a seemingly summer blockbuster - it's obvious Paramount wants to get this one out of the way, so they don't have to worry about a summer release tanking to the bottom of the swimming pool (a place where the pre-teens normally disposed to this mendicant tar would be better off spending the day.) It's futile to promote a product without any real integrity, or so I thought. Amazing what a little muscle can do. It's already seen some couple million smackers (across the face!) for it's previews and advance releases, but when it all comes down, G.I. Joe: Retaliation is one hunk of movie that holds a strong PR campaign in it's biceps, but can't think for itself, and never latches on to the timeless fact that the real strength of a movie lies in it's story and it's characters, both factors of the machine that are simultaneously weak.