G.I. Joe: The other half of the battle isn’t all that bad…

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I saw G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra last night. Don’t cringe too hard, I’m fine. I think collectively we thought this movie was going to be horrible. You’d actually be surprised.

I went into this movie expecting to see the most terrible piece of cinema ever created. G.I. Joe was not pre-screened for critics, which usually means the company is protecting the movie from bad reviews that will hurt the opening weekend. Everyone thought this movie was going to be horrible. While the movie wasn’t great, it wasn’t all that bad either.

Most of the problems people have when a movie is made of something from either their childhood or another form of pop culture media, is that they don’t stick to the source. They stray too far from the original material in order to bring in a wider audience. Take the Resident Evil movies for example. I think the first one is the only one that sticks closely to the main story, and then from there it was just a zombie action movie with the RE name slapped on it. G.I. Joe doesn’t fall victim to this…yet. Once this turns into a movie series I might have to retract that statement, but for now let’s just focus on this movie. Alright?

I was fairly impressed with this movie. It was a lot better than I thought it was going to be. Early impressions of this movie made it look like a cheesy crapped out summer action movie. It was that, but better. The only downsides I saw with this movie were acting, some of the story and some visuals. A lot of the acting was either over done, too cartoony, or just lazy. The visuals appeared cheesy in some scenes, and in others they fit. It gave the movie an overall cartoony look, but in a way that’s good for it. For some reason the writers connected almost everyone together. There were a group of characters that had a long standing relationship that didn’t need to be there.  It was mostly used as a plot device and help move the story along, but overall it just felt weird.

The movie is full of those typical action movie clichés as well. The slow-mo walk towards the camera, the brooding tough guy on a motorcycle riding in the rain, pretty much any movie cliché you can think of makes it. There is so much foreshadowing it almost ruins the movie. With so many flashbacks I thought I was watching an episode of LOST. At least the flashbacks are short and to the point, for a 2 hour movie they don’t take up a lot of time to reveal back story. They do just enough to fill in the holes then get back to the action.

On the plus side, this was a good G.I. Joe movie. Note, I did not say it was a good movie; just that it was a good G.I. Joe movie. Everything in this movie was over the top, much like the comics and cartoon. Crazy weapons, super advanced technology and enormous bases help to capture the Joe world on the big screen. They even throw in those catch phrases we know and love from the cartoon, and even from the figures from the 60’s! The story is something you could really see in the cartoons or comics. I went in expecting to see some over the top Army commercial; instead I got a military sci-fi action movie. Plus, this movie has the most brutal child kung-fu fight I’ve ever seen. Want to see a couple 10 year olds beating the crap out of each other in choreographed fight moves? Then watch G.I. Joe…or wait until someone posts that part on YouTube…

I’d have to say G.I .Joe: The Rise of Cobra is a decent movie. It’s not great, but it’s not horrible. If you’re looking for a fun movie to watch then check it out. Just don’t go in expecting a serious movie. Remember, it’s a movie based on a cartoon that’s based on a toy line. So now you know, and knowing is half the battle (yeah I totally just did that).

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