The 80’s was undoubtedly the manliest and most muscular decade in film history (as recently decided upon by Muscle & Fitness). We had former Mr. Olympia and Mr. Universe Arnold Schwarzenegger. Rocky…no, Rambo…no, Rocky…ummm Sylvester Stallone, the muscles from Brussels Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren who challenged most of these muscleheads head on.
In the early 90’s action fans wanted to see all these stars together in one movie. Well, Sly pulled most of them together (with only Van Damme turning down a role) and even managed to bring in some of today’s hottest action heroes: Jason Statham and Jet Li. He didn’t stop there though, he also corralled the big-ass robot, former NLFer, Terry Crews, MMA star Randy Couture, former WWE champ Steve Austin, and the come back kid Mickey Rourke. While the Ah-nuld and Willis only had brief cameos they made the most of their time on screen and Sly even took a small dig at the Austrian oak.
The Expendables is far from a perfect movie, but man oh man, did I enjoy this flick. I would absolutely recommend it to anyone who produces high levels of testosterone. The Expendables is Man-tastic. Yes, I went there. The well timed humour and incredible action sequences come together to form a movie that had my clean shavin’ face covered in facial hair by the time the credits rolled from over exposure to manly awesomeness.
One of the things I enjoyed the most was the fact that Stallone, who directed this flick, avoided the typical cliches that riddle most of today’s action films with the shaky cam and quick cuts. He kept things old school and showed the action we like to see, and used a boatload of practical effects.
I’m also happy with the casting. The diversity of the cast worked well together. Personally, I really enjoyed Lundgren’s role. He made the most of what he was given and stole every scene he was in. Statham also seemed to bring his A game as he was given the most screen time next to Stallone. He seemed to be having a tonne of fun bringin’ the hurt in what has to be his best performance and film to date.
While Jet Li seemed to get shafted a little as the other top billed star he also made the most of the character despite his smaller screen time. Who knew Jet Li could be so funny? He also got one of the coolest 1-on-1 fight scenes in the movie.
My adrenaline was coursing through my veins like bullets through the villains in the movie when leaving the theatre. So, I took an estrogen pill just to ensure I didn’t tear out of the parking lot and try and run every other person off the road on the drive home. The Expendables is the film that action junkies have been starving for.
Word is Stallone is starting to work on the sequel and I cannot wait. Hopefully, he’s able to get Van Damme involved this time around. With Arnold wrapping up his political career I’m hoping he’ll be more involved in the next one too. BRING IT!