The Expendables (2010)

“The Expendables” (2010)

IMDb

tough guys

Generally speaking, this was what was expected of it. It is a film about tough guys, properly old and old fashioned, according to today’s standards. It follows every cliché of the older films, and even the action scenes of each actor mirror what we remember seeing them do. We can even see which character was supposed to be performed by Van Damme!, based on his action sequences (the flying kick, out of the fire). We have the love-driven motivations that were quite common in every breed of the 80’s action, from Chuck Norris to Sly. But that was what everybody was expecting, right? Those who went to see this one wanted to see the fake toughness of this now old guys. It was a time travel, we were not watching the old guys, instead we were watching the memory of them, a cartoon of them. And having this kind of “old glories” casting was like seeing Batman, Spiderman and Superman in the same story.

But apart from that, there were interesting things going on here. One of them, the less remarkable, was the adaptation of old fashioned action styles (big muscles, physical poses, hard punches) to a modern eye to catch action, in which we are taken to the middle of the fight. In a way it was a kind of Statham vs Stallone thing. This was well done, i guess, but it’s quite impossible to stitch the two together. It’s like placing Chaplin on a Monthy Pyton film. But it’s interesting how Stallone, the director, is in touch with what’s being done.

Mickey Rourke is the only true actor here. Everybody does what’s expected, and risks nothing outside what everybody expects them to be. But Rourke has a true life hanging on his bones, and his bits are the best of the film, the ones where we feel we are watching a film, and not a collection of punch clips. That’s why he was here, to through acting dimension to the film. That’s also why they didn’t put his character on the fights, nor made him killed by some stupid revenge. I enjoyed that they did this.

Stallone+Willis+Arnold. It works, because it is what we know it is: the folding of the real world of the politician Schwarzenegger, who invades the space of the former actor Schwarzenegger, clicks something in the audiences that causes irresistible and stupid laughs (i laughed). The film can take, as a short isolated clip.

If this could have had Van Damme, Seagal, Snipes… and someone else i’m forgetting, it would probably have been a better cartoon, but a worse film. As it is, it’s well leveraged.

My opinion: 2/5

This comment on IMDb

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