måndag 8 september 2014

The Expendables 3

My childhood had both great moments, and some really tough moments, that i had to get out off. I managed to do so, thanks to certain people who believed in me, and for that i will always be gratefull. Another part of my childhood that i never forget, are the glorious days of video violence. Ah yes, those wonderful cheesy ninja films, military action films, or even cyborg cop movies that could make the worst day feel better. I must have seen several hundreds of B movies, in the 80´s and 90´s, and i just loved seeing the really cheesy ones. Bad acting, bad special effects, and sometimes it included naked girls, and lots of flesh wounds. Thankfully some film makers still do B movies and try to keep the industry going on limited budget. This is the way most of the classic action stars, Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Van Damme, Chuck Norris and many others started from. On very limited budget they all made classic action films, that can still be enjoyed today. As they all got bigger in Hollywood, the budget increased, and made more action films. Today, the industry have changed, and we have noticed that the old school action stars are not as big as they used to be. Except for 2 films, and we are talking about The Expendables. To gather around action film stars of the 80´s and a new generation action personalities, showed that we can still enjoy classic video violence action, in a bigger production value. In the first Expendables movie, Sylvester Stallone directed himself, and showed us how talented he is in this genre. It became a huge box office success, and the audience loved seeing a huge cast classic actors kicking ass together. In The Expendables 2, director Simon West took over, and gave us the best Expendables film so far. It was an action feast with so much fun dialogue, so much violence, that i simply called it one of the best films of 2012. The Expendables 2 became a huge box office hit, especially in the rest of the world, while in Usa the film did not do as well as the first one. So here we go, with the third sequel in our hands. This time director Patrick Hughes took on the job to direct The Expendables 3, who directed a much smaller film in 2010 called Red Hill, that was praised by critics. Since this is the first time Patrick tries this genre, does he give The Expendables 3 all that we hoped for, or is he the wrong person for a film in this category ?

The Expendables crew Barney Ross ( Sylvester Stallone ), Lee Christmas ( Jason Statham ), Gunnar Jensen ( Dolph Lundgren ) and Toll Road ( Randy Couture ) are on a mission to free former Expendables member Doctor Death ( Wesley Snipes ) on a well armed train prison transport. They succeed, as Doctor Death is happy to be released out in the free. But he is not completely free yet, Barney have a mission waiting in Somalia, where they need his help. In Somalia, a shipment of bombs is expected to be delivered to a warlord. Barney and his team strike against this army, with the help of Hale Caesar ( Terry Crews ), handling the boat transortation. The mission seems to be going well, until Barney discover who is behind this bomb shipment. It is his old enemy Conrad Stonebanks, who he thought was dead. Turns out that was a lie, as he tries to kill him. Conrad escape, but shoot Hale so he is badly injured. Taken to a hospital, Hale will not be able to get out of the hospital for a long time. Barney gather his team at their favourite bar, to tell them that this is over. Christmas is furious, why Barney want to split the team. Still, Barney have made up his mind. Barney meet CIA operative Max Drummer ( Harrison Ford ), where Max gove Barney an order to catch Conrad alive, so he can be brought to the Hague International Criminal Court, where he will stand trial for all his crimes on humanity. To do this, Barney needs a new Expendables team, with the help of retired mercenary Bonaparte ( Kelsey Grammer ) who knows where they can find the right people. Barney recruit the new following members ex-Marine John Smilee ( Kellan Lutz ),  nightclub bouncer Luna ( Ronda Rousey ), computer expert Thorn ( Glen Powell ) and weapons expert Mars ( Victor Ortiz ). One more man wish to join the team, Galgo ( Antonio Banderas ), a former member of the Spanish Armed Forces. But Barney turn him down, and say they don´t need him. As the team travel to Romania, to catch Conrad during a business deal with Albanian mafia leader Goran Vata ( Robert Davi ), the mission goes as planned and they have Conrad captured. But the mission fails, when their prison transport is attacked by Conrad´s team. The new Expendables team is captured as prisoners, while Barney falled down a bridge during an explosion into water. He survives, but his team is now prisoners in the hands of Conrad. He have no choice, he need to locate his team members with the help of Galgo, and his old team.

I actually went to see the swedish gala premiere in Stockholm, winning 2 tickets to see The Expendables 3 with famous swedish people. Free hamburgers, free beer and free wine, what more could you ask for ? I even got to meet Sweden´s biggest film critic Ronny Svensson, a great guy. Now, let´s talk about The Expendables 3 for a moment. I was really excited to see if the third film would keep the nostalgic feeling that the previous films have done. I am happy to say that this sequel delivers, in it´s own way. But there is something missing here. Remember all that wonderful massive violence scenes from the previous films ? There still are some amazing action sequences, but it is not at the same level as The Expendables 2, this means less blood, less brutality, and this is a mistake. One reason why this changed is because there was a decision to make this film Pg-13. There is plenty of violence ( in some scenes ), but in a film like The Expendables, we want to see bodies filled with 350 bullets, broken body parts and extreme fight scenes. Still, if you look at what is new in The Expendables 3, we get more comedy and a new cast, including Harrison Ford, Mel Gibson, Kelsey Grammer, Antonio Banderas, Ronda Rousey, Kellan Lutz, Victor Ortiz and any more. This give The Expendables 3 a different approach, that actually works well. Especially Mel Gibson as the bad guy Conrad Stonebanks. Antonio Banderas is hysterical really, as the very energetic Galgo, and give some really funny scenes. Even if i like seeing Ronda Rousey kicking ass, one thing is for sure. She needs to work on her acting, it becomes a bit dull to hear her say one line:- Men. She does this in 2 scenes where she is kicking down men, and it is not really that funny. Thankfully we get to have a good time with the old cast, with Stallone, Statham, Schwarzenegger, Dolph, Crews, including the new member Wesley Snipes who does a good performance. Compared to the previous Expendables films, i am a little bit dissapointed. But hey, i had a great time with The Expendables 3 for what it is, an action film for old school fans. And great that so many new classic actors joined in, that helps the film give some more quality. Director Patrick Hughes surprised me, that he managed to make this his own version of The Expendables, but kept some ingredients from the past. I wish he could have improved some details, but i still think he did a great job. There are discussions about a 4th film, i would not be surprised if we get to see the gang again, even if this third film failed at the box office ticket sales. I suggest you go and see The Expendables 3, if you want to have a good time. I am not sure if i should give a 3 or a 4 in rating, but my heart says 4 because The Expendables is guaranteed a great time for all ages. I feel like exploding some russian camps with a chopper, anyone want to join me ? There is free vodka included, after we killed some terrorists of course. By the way, don´t touch my machete, i might need it if Jehova´s Witnesses attack us.

Rating: DDDD

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