The Expendables — Review #JPMN

The Expendables (2010) — Stallone and explosions: always fun, 7/10.

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Each “Quick Review” is an excerpt from a full episode. Incorporating viewer comments and tweets, your host and film critic Jonathan Paula reviews everything from opening day releases, recent DVDs, and classics from years past. Along with your votes, these films are scored on the “Rate-O-Matic” for a 1-10 ranking. A “Five Word Summary” quickly encapsulates each review while “Factor Facts” highlight the the best and worst features of a movie in each of ten key categories. New, full episodes of Movie Night are uploaded to the JPizzle1122 channel every Friday, November through May. Each “trailer review” is a short, 3-minute upload where Jon shares his thoughts, commentary, and speculation on an upcoming film’s recently released trailer.

Born in February 1986, Jonathan Paula is a professional YouTuber and creator of the hit web series, “Is It A Good Idea To Microwave This?”. In April 2006 he founded Jogwheel Productions, a new media production company that specializes in web video. He has been reviewing films since 2003, and professionally since 2009. Jon graduated from Emerson College in 2008 with a degree in Television Production / Radio Broadcasting. He currently lives in Rockingham, NH with his wife Rebecca.

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~~ Review Script ~~
Veteran action star, and Oscar nominated Sylvester Stallone wrote, directed, and stars in this over-the-top action blockbuster that was released nationwide just four months ago. As advertised, this film is a venerable who’s-who of Hollywood’s action celebs, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Steve Austin, and Mickey Rourke all join Stallone as an elite team of highly skilled mercenaries known as The Expendables. Bruce Willis, and Arnold Schwarzenegger also show up for single-scene cameo, which honestly seems a bit forced just to get their faces in the trailer. Stallone is no stranger to action films though, and The Expendables is well-paced, and doesn’t disappoint in the one department everyone is watching for: explosions and gore. The film especially shines in the a couple of the large set-piece sequences – one involves Statham crawling into the nose of a seaplane to gun down, and then torch an entire dock of enemy soldiers. Entirely unnecessary, but incredibly gratifying to watch. And although Stallone’s directing is occasionally a bit too fast and distracting, most of the hand-to-hand fight scenes in this film are well choreographed, and easy to follow – which is great, considering roughly 20% of this film is just people being punched in the face. As you’d expect though, where Expendables fails is with it’s mammoth cast — there’s just not enough time to develop most of the supporting cast. Mickey Rourke receives all but eight minutes of screen time in this film, but delivers such an incredibly moving monologue in one of his few scenes, it makes you wonder why such a talented actor was given such a small role. The same goes for Eric Roberts, who despite being given just a few minutes of screen time, is quite convincing as the film’s sadistic villain. Besides Rourke’s seemingly out-of-place monologue, and underdeveloped supporting cast, the only thing I had issue in The Expendables was some of the surprisingly cheesy and unrealistic special effects and digital blood. Considering the caliber of cast here, it’s no wonder Stallone had to go cheap on the visuals, as I imagine most of the 82 million dollar budget went towards the actor’s salaries. But with a high-body count, and plenty of explosions, the Expendables is a damn entertaining 103-minute-film, even if you do leave your brain at the door. Stallone and explosions, always fun.

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