126 minutes - Action/Comedy
Director :- Patrick Hughes
Cast :- Um, well...there you go!
"With great power, comes great responsibility", was the advice given by a very wise Uncle Ben to Peter. But I guess, none of these veterans took him seriously.
When we first heard about the Expendables, back in 2010, with the idea of bringing together action Gods, Stallone, Arnie, Willis, Statham and Jet Li, honestly, a heck of a lot more was expected than what we got. The first Expendables was quite a disappointment, other than the action of course, because that's the one thing these guys do best, and throw around a few good one-liners. But, other than that, bad screenplay, bad story, bad mostly everything. Then came around, Expendables 2, with the great Belgian, Jean Claude Van Damme, as the villain, Villain (Creative, right?), which was quite an improvement in humor and action, but the rest, still bad. But then, what else would you want when 13 action stars meet up?
Expendables 3 continues the trend of good humor and mind blowing action, with a sucky everything else.
The movie starts out with a very James Bond-like train sequence, where Stallone and a few of his Expendables rescue old friend/crazy knife thrower Doc, played rightly by Wesley Snipes. The sequence, like most of the other action sequences through out the series, was amazing, from the helicopter landing on the train, to Snipes running the length of the train, to shoot down the train yard.
The team then meets up with everybody's favorite muscle man, Hale Caesar, in Somalia to intercept a shipment of bombs meant to be delivered to a warlord. But wait, the arms dealer turns out to be none other than Conrad Stonebanks, played by our very own Mel Gibson. Stonebanks was one of the founding Expendables, who Barney assumed he had killed when Stonebanks went rogue and began dealing arms illegally. Barney, being in shock, doesn't fight like he usually does, and Stonebanks flees in a helicopter, but not before doing the most sadistic yet badass thing in the movie, shoots Caesar in his thigh, back, and arse, severely injuring him. This, obviously leads to the wounded team member instigates determination in team cliche later on, and also leads to Barney giving Caesar his Lucky Ring.
When Stonebanks flees, Ross realises his team is beyond their time, and he needs younger and better members. He surely does get new mercenaries, with the help of retired mercenary Bonaparte, by Kelsey Grammer, younger surely, better? Not exactly. The new Expendables, ex-Marine John Smilee (Kellan Lutz), nightclub bouncer Luna (Ronda Rousey), computer expert Thorn (Glen Powell) and weapons expert Mars (Victor Ortiz). He also finds fast talking, quick and witty Galgo, a mercenary himself, who got kicked out of his team. Galgo, played by Antonio Banderas, was surprisingly, quite the comic relief needed, other than the laughs from the sarcastic, snide comments we generally get.
The movie was quite pacy. There was never a moment where you'd think "How much more of this?". This slightly makes up for the bad script, screenplay and direction.
The action, as always is some of the best you could see, though a bit exaggerated at times. The choice of the series, to go for pyrotechnics and more natural shooting and blasts, rather than CGI or special effects greatly increases the depth of the action during the movie. Good cinematography and perfect camera shots lead to some of the best action scenes of the series, especially during the climax fight.
The humor is there throughout alright, but not with kicks. Its just a few lines here and there, the rest seems quite serious, and sometimes the humor even feels forced. But when the young and old meet, it leads to a lot of sarcasm, teasing and the humor gets some life pumped into it. Kellan Lutz and Antonio Banderas are probably the funniest, with actual jokes and not just plain dialogues, though Banderas' entire body language in the movie, feels quite off and funny.
Even though the script was very predictable, the direction was bad, and the story was bland without twists, the action and humor manage to get this movie up, including pretty cool cameos from Harrison Ford has a helicopter driving CIA Official, and Arnie laughing while shooting a machine gun.
Mel Gibson plays quite the quirky and sadistic villain, who buys art without knowing anything about it. He plays his role well and was possibly the best actor during the 126 minutes, but the main fight of Mel Gibson vs Sylvester Stallone becomes quite an anti-climax.
And of course in the end, there's Christmas throwing knives at a board, this time with Doc, and Barney inducting the new members into the Expendables.
After the first two movies, a lot wasn't expected of Expendables 3, and we were right not to.
Special Mention to Ronda Rousey for being the first female in the Expendables officially.
Watch it in the theaters if you really don't have anything to do.