Barney Ross (Stallone) decides to relieve his team of their duties after a mission goes terribly wrong and injures one of their own. The man responsible for the destruction is co-founder of the Expendables team Conrad Stonebanks (Gibson), who Barney was once close with. Determined to bring down Stonebanks, the Expandable’s leader recruits a new team that is younger, faster, and more tech savy. Together, the new Expendables team led by Barney looks to take down Stonebanks and stop him from supplying enemies with dangerous arms.
The whole idea of the Expendables is brilliant in this day in age. A bunch of old school action stars coming together to honor the good o’l days of action films. Though the franchise has had it’s problems through the first two films, whether it was poor execution, writing or direction, I still remained a fan no matter what, because I love seeing these guys together. After the numbers for Expendables 3 opening weekend at box office came in, I couldn’t believe how much this new/bigger film had flopped. Now that I had a chance to see the movie, I can see why it did.
21 years since Demolition Man
The Expendables 3 is what I would call a water down Expendables film, which is really bad. Yes, the Expendables 3 included a bigger cast which I’ll get to in a moment, but the violence took a major step down. By violence I mean blood, body parts flying, actually seeing the kill, classic one liners, everything that old school action movies were that this film is supposedly honoring. A majority of the action in this movie is just people shooting guns and other people falling. There was very little fighting going on, very little hand to hand combat. Remember this is a film that includes Wesley Snipes, Jet Li, and Jason Statham, all are guys known for kicking ass. We seen plenty of shooting through two films already, except this time it was less intense and a bit boring.
Yes, the Expendables featured a much bigger cast, but bigger isn’t always better. The guys I came here to see, the original Expendables (old dudes) were cut short to make way for the new team. The film spent a good chunk of the time introducing these new members. Their attempt was to build their characters up, but instead it’s poorly executed. As an Expendables leader are you really just gonna round up a bunch of people to make a team that includes a club bouncer, a prize fighter, a rock climber/hacker to try and take down a former/co-founder of the Expendables, played by a muscled out Mel Gibson? The original Expendables team are muscle bound guys who are convincing, maybe because during most their acting careers they’ve played roles where they were dangerous with a gun or knife. Get what I’m saying? This new team includes a UFC champion (okay cool), a professional boxer (who’s last I checked isn’t that good), an up and coming action star (who’s Hercules movie flopped, but I’m still pulling for to do good), and some other dude. I was never really sold on this new team, surely you could’ve found a better team.
I do have my positives for this movie. First it was really good seeing Wesley Snipes back in action. He was great and I loved the references to his real life legal dramas. Mel Gibson as the villain who was a former Expendable was just terrific. The man is a really great actor and should consider more villain roles. Kellen Lutz was pretty damn good in this movie. He definitely showed his potential and was the clear best from the new team. Antonio Banderas was funny as Galgo with his energy and constant talking, maybe talking a bit too much. Arnold Schwarzenegger had one line in this movie that was just hilarious. I’ll give you a hint it’s a reference to Predator. But that’s really it.
Aim small, miss small
Overall, this was a decent Expendables movie. I went in to the movie wanting to see all the action stars together and just kick ass. Though it wasn’t as good as I hoped, it’s what I got. The film could have used better/less CGI, too much doesn’t work with a film like this. A cast this large definitely hurt the film more than it helped. I still had fun, but not as much as I did previous Expendables films.
I’m gonna give the Expendables 3 a 5.5/10