Ladies, I’m warning you that if you are planning on watching to win some brownie points with your guy, but secretly don’t mind due to the fact that Channing Tatum is in the film and can at least get some eye candy – don’t! You will feel cheated as Tatum’s character dies within the first 10 minutes of the film. No more eye candy unless you are a Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson fan, that is.
A sign right off the top that this was not going to be time well spent was the fact that the film is brought to you in association with Hasbro. Hasbro? Really?!? The toy maker?!? Geez! That being in the opening credits did not instill any kind of hope in me and this doubt bore out.
I have not seen any of the other G.I. Joe films, but I think I went into the watching of it with a fairly open mind as you cannot expect Sir Laurence Olivier in Henry V out of a film with G.I. Joe in the title. You have to expect plenty of mindless action supported by a rather lacklustre story. Character development, good acting and a superior story is not part of the deal here. That being said, I have to say even with those expectations I was totally underwhelmed.
In DMZ, North Korea the G.I. Joes are tasked with infiltrating a military base. There they pull off their usual high quality and errorless job. Unbeknownst to them their orders are now being issued to them by Zartan (Arnold Vosloo – The Mummy, Blood Diamond), who is posing as the President of the United States (Jonathan Pryce – Tomorrow Never Dies, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest). With a devious plan in mind, he now sends the Joes out to Pakistan to obtain some nuclear weapons. Once there things go wrong quickly. The men notice jets coming in quickly and these jets start shooting at the Joes and dropping bombs. The Joes are all killed except for Roadblock (Dwayne Johnson – Furious 6, The Scorpion King), Flint (D.J. Cotrona – Dear John, Venom) and Lady Jaye (Adrianne Palicki – from television’s Friday Night Lights).
The President/Zartan speaks to the nation about the attack. He frames the Joes for the attack and Snake Eyes (Ray Park – X-Men, G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra) for the assassination of the Pakistani President. Meanwhile, Firefly (Ray Stevenson – from television’s Dexter) breaks Cobra Commander (Luke Bracey – Monte Carlo) and Storm Shadow (Byung-hun Lee – Red 2) out of the maximum security prison they are being held at.
Zartan has a plan involving a large weapon he is building called Zeus. One of his underlings informs him about the three surviving Joes. The three Joes go to the home of retired General Joe Colton (Bruce Willis – Looper, The Sixth Sense), the original G.I. Joe. With his help they come up with a plan to prove the President is a phony. At the same time in Tokyo, Snake Eyes meets with his mentor, Blind Master (RZA – Django Unchained, Pacific Rim), and Joe ally, Jinx (Elodie Yung – The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo). Blind Master instructs them they must find Storm Shadow and get him to reveal Cobra’s plans.
In the Hollywood movie industry great hype usually leads to great disappointment. Such is the case with the latest G.I. Joe film. We heard a lot about it with its big cast with plenty of big names and that it was being directed by Jon M. Chu (Justin Bieber: Never Say Never, Step Up 2: The Streets). It really falls flat after all that anticipation. The attempt at your typical good vs. evil battle film misses the mark due to a less than minimal plot.
For action film fans there is plenty to enjoy with a lot of action and fight sequences. The special effects are good and the fights are tight and original. Punches are fast, explosions are big and guns/tanks/weapons are impressive. To Chu’s credit the action sequences are stylishly filmed.
- Audio Commentary by director Jon M. Chu and producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura
- G.I. JOE: Declassified
- Mission Briefing
- Two Ninjas
- The Desert Attack
- COBRA Strikes
- The Lone Soldiers
- The Monastery
- Fort Sumter
- Deleted Scenes