Sometimes a film can be reduced down to one scene. For Apocalypse Now, it's the big helicopter / napalm sequence. For Kick-Ass, it's the big final showdown where Nicolas Cage gets all burnt up, and the big bad guy's hideout gets all shot up. And so far, with the first The Expendables movie, it's the scene where Jason Statham gets some revenge for his token girlfriend against her token a--hole boyfriend for giving her a token bruise in the face. Surely, domestic violence isn't part of the token package? Well, in this movie, it is. But I'll hand it to co-writer/producer/director Sly, who at some point seemed to realize that it's time for the younger generation to do some of the heavy lifting too. Statham's already got quite a few film franchises under his belt, and he's a welcome addition to this one. Something about the aging 80s-90s action flesh is just kinda sad. Schwarzenegger seems to have one scene in the movie, and they seem to have gotten it in one take.
Actually, I'm partial to the big chase sequence where Sly and Jet Li get all shot up to hell in the fancy-schmancy black truck. I remember seeing a "reality show" about the guys who worked on this truck for the movie. Some of the non-action sequences reminded me of a reality show!
While in most respects it appeals to teenage boys, the soundtrack seems to reflect Stallone's own adolescence. (Mississippi Queen and others, what have you.. apparently he doesn't care for Sweet Home Alabama, which is fine by me) Cinematographer Jeffrey Kimball of True Romance and other similar Tony Scott pics fame (NOT Birders: The Central Park Effect Jeffrey Kimball) is on hand to lend his testosterone-laced expertise. I will complement the CGI explosions of the big finale, even though some of them are CGI. And while I'm not the biggest Mickey Rourke fan in the world, as much as I hate to admit it, he sells his dramatic scene about as well as he can. In fact, I'm starting to question The Wrestler now...
There was something else I wanted to say... frankly I've said too much already. But... SPOILER ALERT. According to the web, the definition of the word "expendable" is basically that something is considered to be not worth maintaining or keeping. With that in mind, be sure to look for The Expendables 3 probably around Summer 2014.
-so sayeth The Movie Hooligan