Rashid Irani's review: G.I. Joe: Retaliation

  • Rashid Irani
  • |
  • Updated: Mar 30, 2013 10:34 IST

G.I. Joe: Retaliation
Starring Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis and Channing Tatum, this sequel to the sci-fi action thriller brings the surviving elite special-ops agents against Zartan's forces and government leaders under the enemies' influence.
Release dates: July/August in most international markets

G.I. Joe: Retaliation
Direction: Jon M Chu
Actors: Dwayne Johnson, Adrianne Palicki
Rating: 1/2*

A sequel to G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, the 2009 toy line based G.I. Joe flick, G.I Joe: Retaliation ranks with last week’s Olympus Has Fallen among the worst films of the year (so far). To begin with, it’s almost impossible to figure out what the heck is going on. It doesn’t help that the film’s release was delayed by almost a year, ostensibly to allow for 3D conversion. Sorry to say, but the move was unwarranted.

Director Chu, whose previous credits include the two Step Up teen dance pictures, now targets viewers with a mental age of under-10. He shows scant interest in plot development or in establishing character relationships. Rather, he is determined to waste two hours of our time with firepower-heavy action.

A group of combat-hardened soldiers who sport such risible nicknames as Roadblock (Johnson) and Snake Eyes (Roy Park) must stop a megalomaniac bent on dominating the world.

To make matters more nonsensical, it seems that an imposter has been posing as the American president. Not to worry, though. Our heavily-muscled heroes try to out-macho each other while blowing the battalion of baddies to smithereens. They receive occasional support from a gung-ho General (Bruce Willis, wasted).

The combat sequences are so blurry it’s difficult to tell who’s shooting at whom and why. In case you’re wondering, the ‘Joe’ squad also includes a femme fatale (Palicki, displaying no acting prowess but plenty of cleavage).

At a global disarmament summit towards the climax, the top-ranking Indian representative authorises the launch (“shuru karo”) and later the deactivation (“bandh karo”) of our nuclear warheads. It’s the funniest (unintentionally so, of course) scene you’re likely to see this or any other year.

The ending of G.I. Joe: Retaliation sets up the possibility of another installment of mindless military mayhem. In the meantime, can we get back to some solidly entertaining movies, please?


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