Monday, August 17, 2009

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009)

This is just a quick little ramble so as to maintain some presence on this thing. Basically, the G.I. Joe movie was tolerable. It's watchable in that hit-your-head-enough-time-and-eventually-it-feels-okay kind of way that's increasingly dominating American movies. It's certainly better than Transformers 2, and there are big parts of it that I enjoyed, including the bad guy performances of Sienna Miller, the Asian guy playing Storm Shadow, and the crazy chaos of the Paris chase sequence. I also appreciated that the formerly all-American squad is now an international, NATO-based force, which I know irritates the purists but I'm not one of them.

All that said, it's still probably Stephen Sommers's worst movie that I've seen. Unlike most people, I didn't hate his last movie, Van Helsing - it was overstuffed and had a dumb ending, but you could tell it was being made by a guy who had a real joy in playing with that particular toy box of Universal monsters and expensive CGI and so on. G.I. Joe, on the other hand, feels like a case of pure corporate synergistic hackery, down to the needless addition of shots of aircraft carriers and exosuits and stuff that's basically only in the movie in order for Hasbro to sell more toys. A lot of the movie feels impersonal and pointlessly commercial in order to set up the sequel and so on, and if Stephen Sommers doesn't care about whether or not it makes sense for the Baroness to be good or just misunderstood, or for Cobra Commander's character to make any sense whatsoever, why should I? Also, Channing Tatum is hilariously awful as the alleged lead character - guy, this is the biggest movie you've ever done - you could pretend like you actually want to earn a couple more of these paychecks, at least.

Still, less offensively ludicrous than a lot of this Summer's other movies.


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