Rating: 4 / 5 stars
By Sally Burgess, Technical Manager
Good old-school violence and minimal CGI are the order of the day in this Stallone-driven juggernaut of blood, guts and glory.
Let’s see. Men who get shot in half? Check. Men who get blown up? Check. Cheesy dialogue that would not look out of place in a straight-to-DVD release? Check!
If you had told me that The Expendables had been made in the 1980’s, I would have believed you. Stallone has gathered some of the biggest heavyweights of the last three decades and packed all of their testosterone into The Expendables, written and directed by the big guy himself. This is not as gory as Rambo but there is enough crowd-pleasing violence to sate most appetites. The story revolves around Barney Ross (Stallone) and his band of mercenaries, including Lee Christmas (Jason Statham) and Ying Yang (Jet Li), who are hired by the mysterious Mr. Church to overthrow the dictator of a small South American island. However, when they arrive, things are not what they expected them to be, and the bad guys turn out to be a former CIA agent, played by Eric Roberts, and his henchman (Steve ‘Stone Cold’ Austin).
There is also a cameo appearance from two MAJOR action stars (if you saw the trailer, you’ll know who), and to see these three superstars together in the same frame was pretty cool.
Stallone has lost a considerable amount of body fat for this, and you could easily use his arms as road maps, but for a 64-year old, he looks fantastic.
I liked this movie despite being a bit squeamish. The dialogue is truly awful in parts, but Stallone was aiming for a no-brainer all-out action flick, and I wasn’t really expecting subtlety from a man with biceps like watermelons anyway. This is Sylvester Stallone, not Merchant Ivory.
Go watch The Expendables. It’s good old-fashioned, bloody, explosive, bone-cracking fun!
Standout performance: Sylvester Stallone’s biceps