I haven’t cringed so much during a movie since Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, and felt so bored during a movie since Zookeeper. Expendables 2 is the best of both worlds combined, and it’s supposed to be an R rated action movie but it’s so laughably bad it could pass off as a comedy.
If you’re worried about spoilers from reading this, don’t worry – there’s no plot to spoil in the first place.
But in case you ARE planning to watch the movie, you probably shouldn’t read on from this point.
What happens throughout the 120 minutes is basically:
man kena kidnapped.
men shoot guns.
man blackmails man into taking up a task.
men start task.
men shoot guns. (if it helps, now there’s a woman who joined)
good man die.
good men shoot guns.
bad men die.
good men happy.
man tries to be sad about woman but is happy as long as he gets to continue shooting guns.
Yup, that’s about it. And in a movie has no plot, having some eye candy helps. A LOT. Like in Ghost of Girlfriends Past, at least there’s Jennifer Garner and Emma Stone. And in Zookeeper there’s the animals. But Expendables 2 doesn’t even have the decency to provide eye candy, except a buncha testosterone-overcharged old men who make weak jokes and then laugh at their own weak jokes. It’s like what Schwarzenegger says at the end:
Stallone (referring to a plane that was given to them): That thing belongs in a museum.
Schwarzenegger: We all do.
And yep, the chick in the team was nothing to scream about:
Actually wait, I’m wrong – you probably feel like screaming after seeing her face in this poster.
And, the closest thing to an eye candy that is Liam Hemsworth gets killed early in the movie, forcing me to sit through the rest of the movie in sheer agony.
(In case you were unaware like me, this decent-looking dude is Thor’s i.e. Chris Hemsworth’s brother. Probably explains why.)
The only other decent-looking thing was probably Jason Statham who has a bit of this rugged feel yet doesn’t look like he overdosed on protein powder.
And if you thought this was the worst, just wait till you hear the lines! Ohh, the script is so awful that the movie would actually be better if it were was in some other language I didn’t understand (and no subtitles were provided).
Let me list a few examples (I actually had time to take notes because there was nothing worthwhile on the screen to miss anyway):
1. Hemsworth was explaining why he quit the army after 3 years, and it sounded like it was gonna be some decent sob story or touching explanation that led to him becoming disillusioned. He built up to the part where he’s supposed to reveal the last straw that made him pull the plug: his captain’s lackadaisical response caused him to lose his men, and to add fuel to the fire, upon returning to camp he found out that his captain killed the stray dog he adopted.
That’s right, the stray dog he adopted.
I mean with all due respect to stray dogs, (and it’s a good thing he adopted the stray dog – people should adopt more dogs, there’s too many of them poor uns on the streets) but I was waiting with bated breath for the breath-taking reason that changed the life perspective of this fine young man and then all I got was a dead stray dog. Imagine my disappointment.
2. OK then Hemsworth died (which to me was the cathartic release part of the film because there was nothing more to look forward to after that, and therefore the film should have ended there) then Stallone makes this absolutely tearjerker of an eulogy about “Why is it the ones who deserve to live, that want to live the most, die — and the ones that don’t deserve to live, keep on going”. After which nobody bothers to answer his question and Statham instead asks:
Statham: What’s the plan?
Stallone: Track ’em, find ’em, kill ’em.
Ok wow. Way to spoil the moment guys.
3. The gal in the team was feeling super bored in the middle of the night and gets up to talk to Stallone, in what supposedly looks like an emotional exchange where Stallone is going to pour his manly heart out and maybe shed some manly tears and then the gal is supposed to walk up, pat him and say “there, there” and then Stallone gives her a manly arm-around-the-shoulder and then they feel like their relationship has, to use the colloquial term, upped one level. Indeed, the gal starts out by asking about what he feels about the death of
the sole eye candy in the film Hemsworth’s character, and I brace myself for the aforementioned emotional exchange. But no, this is Expendables 2, so of course none of that happens. Instead,
Nan Yu (the gal): Do you think about him?
Stallone: I think about him all the time.
OK, that has to be the gayest thing his character has ever said. I stop myself from picturing a cross-gen relationship between the two dudes, and continue watching. Nan Yu asks him something about how he is dealing with all this, to which he replies,
Stallone: We (men) keep it light until it’s time to go dark, and then we get pitch–black. Do you understand?
Nan Yu: (looks at him meaningfully) Yes, I do.
After which, she proceeds to walk away and go back to sleep.
I almost wanted to spit the bubble from my bubble tea at the screen. GET BACK HERE WOMAN. I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT THE HECK THAT IS SUPPOSED TO MEAN AND YOU’RE NOT SLEEPING TILL I DO.
4. There’s this part where the team first meets Chuck Norris, and asks him about the rumour that he was bitten by a king cobra. This is his reply:
Norris: Yeah, but after several days of excruciating pain, the cobra died.
You know, it’d have been funnier if they didn’t laugh at their own movie references.
5. And if you think the “final showdown” would be better, no it doesn’t.
Stallone and Van Damme the antagonist face off, with the latter asking the former something about wanting to “fight like a man or sheep“. Apparently sheep hold guns and missiles because Stallone decides he wants to fight like a man and drops all his weapons. The reason he gives is that he wants to “take you (Van Damme) alive”. And after exchange of some blows, Van Damme gets Stallone pinned in a corner, using Stallone’s knife, and proclaims with a philosophical air:
Van Damme: Ironic, here we are, me and your knife.
No it isn’t ironic, and I don’t think you know the meaning of irony. But never mind. Stallone then proceeds to turn the tables, and after all that talk about fighting like a man and wanting him alive, decides to stab Van Damme like a sheep.
What a waste of my $11.