And now to G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra:
1.) Of course, current infatuation renders me as slightly partial when it comes to such matters, but I do think that Joseph Gordon Levitt was one of the best things about this movie. He was so deliciously over the top. There’s good over the top, and there’s bad over the top. He landed on the good side for me.
2.) The bad side . . . er, Dennis Quaid, perhaps? There’s something about him that’s bothered me since watching Flight of the Phoenix. He’s one of those hit or miss actors that continues to frustrate me . . . he’s great as Doc Holiday in Wyatt Earp but what the hell is he doing in G.I. Joe? I mean, I don’t care that he’s chosen to do such a silly movie—if I could even remotely act, I would do crap Syfy movies and have a blast doing them—but posing? Is he actually POSING as he speaks? Yes, yes he is. Insert facepalm here.
3.) The real problem with this movie is the women. I mean, Channing Tatum’s perfectly serviceable as an action hero, and Christopher Eccleston gets to rub his hands together and act smarmy, which has to be as easy as breathing for him by now, and I kind of despise Marlon Waynes as Buddy Sidekick/Comic Relief, because he has no personality other than to joke, flirt, and ask about Duke . . . but I guess he’s acceptable enough, and anyway, he doesn’t make me want to die. On the other hand, Rachel Nichols as Scarlett and Sienna Miller as the Baroness? Ugh. These are like kill-me-dead, parody performances of kick-ass women.
Cause I figure, on the scale of Bad Ass Chicks, it goes something like this: the top of the pyramid has hardcore, believable, Amazing Bad Asses like Selena from 28 Days Later, Zoe from Firefly, The Bride (well, almost anyone) from Kill Bill and Aeryn Sun from Farscape. Then you’ve got Decent Bad Ass Women like Milla Jovovich from almost anything but especially the Resident Evil films, Max from Dark Angel, and Kate Beckinsale from Underworld. These women, for some reason or another, don’t quite make it as Amazing, but they’re serviceable and fun and believable enough for two hours. And then there are the Awful, Useless Attempts at Bad Ass, the ones that you watch and make you kind of want to fall on a sword, like Jessica Biel from Blade III, Jennifer Garner from Elektra, and these two women from G.I. Joe. I’m not asking for Oscar-worthy acting here, but good God. These performances aren’t cheesy and enjoyable; they’re cringe-worthy and nauseating. Uck.
4.) VERY SMALL SPOILER: there’s a scene where the Airforce comes in too early and blows the shit out of a bunker with people still inside. I bet the people in the Airforce just LOVED this movie. Also, the French.
5.) SLIGHTLY LARGER SPOILER: There’s some mind control in this movie which, frankly, was better used in X2. I think I’d like to watch more movies where love doesn’t conquer all, especially at the climax of the film. Because, for Christ’s sake. It’s mind control, dammit! You’re not supposed to just overthrow it.
6.) I’m not great with accents (I have a tendency to mix up English and Australian and Irish and Scottish, yes, yes, very bad American) but did Christopher Eccleston’s Scottish seem ridiculously forced to anyone else? Or is that just my badly untrained ear?
7.) I didn’t play with or watch G.I. Joe as a kid. Most of what I know about the series has been gleaned from Robot Chicken sketches (the same is true with He-Man, Thundercats, and The Smurfs). So, that being said, this movie didn’t ruin any childhood fantasies of mine. It’s a crappy movie, no doubt. But it’s easily watchable and kind of funny and other than Women Who Wouldn’t Know How to Deliver a Line If It Bit Them In The Ass, it’s decent as a mock, laugh, and enjoy kind of movie. I sort of want to watch it with friends Kaci and Dave, Kaci cause she’s just funny (hi, Kaci!) and Dave cause I can imagine him ranting about everything they’ve mangled and otherwise changed since the cartoon, which I would find amusing. Anyway, I’ve given this movie some shit, but it set out to do what it was supposed, didn’t it? I figure I was more or less entertained, and since I had absolutely no expectations, none of them were broken.
Although. I just found out last night that they’re making a sequel to this film. And that, I don’t know if I want to see.
Maybe if Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s in it.