Barney Ross (Sylvester Stallone) and his
crew of Expendables take on a mission to retrieve a mysterious cargo as ordered by CIA agent Mr. Church (Bruce Willis). The mission turns personal after plutonium crazed bad guy Jean Vilain (Jean-Claude
Van Damme) kills one of Barney’s team. They must stop Vilain’s
plot to sell the plutonium and get revenge for their fallen comrade.
THE EXPENDABLES 2 is a muscular driven
sequel to the original film which was a way to get old action stars to shine again.
Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger get bigger roles with Arnold delivering his lines with scene stealing charisma. The cameo from Chuck Norris is lame even though they are playing homage to one of his old characters
in addition to poking fun at Chuck Norris. Jean-Claude Van Damme is awesome
as the over-the-top bad guy who is willing to lay down his own life. Jet
Li is only in the beginning of the film even though he gets one of the top billing spots while they use an another Chinese
actress to play a beautiful woman who can handle herself and giving the film a chance to poke fun at Gunner (Dolphn Lundgren). The sequel manages to put in many references to each actor’s own films and in
some cases drawing elements from their own life (they weave in the story of gunner going to MIT as a chemical engineer and
Dolph Lundgren went to MIT).
THE EXPENDABLES has some wonderfully directed
action scenes from director Simon West with the beginning, a mine sequence in a big cave, and the climatic showdown between
Van Damme and Satllone (Stallone approved Van Damme’s request to rewrite the action) being the high points. The biggest weakness is the film injects too much humor into the story. Other than that, it is an enjoyable action romp and yet I do think the script of the first film was
stronger. If you want to see the action stars that have their light in
the spotlight again, go see it for the awesome action scenes.
This movie review is (c)8-20-2012 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to email@example.com