Expendables 3 (2014)
Sylvester Stallone is at it again. He has gathered his Expendables for another go-round. The Expendables (2010) was good, The Expendables 2 (2012) was even better. Will this third time be the charm? The teaser trailer doesn’t reveal enough of anything, except for the fact that the boys are back and hopefully better than ever.
The movie was directed by Patrick Hughes and the noteworthy cast includes Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Mel Gibson, Antonio Banderas, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Terry Crews, Kelsey Grammer, Randy Couture, and Robert Davi.
I especially like the addition of Gibson and Ford.
I think viewers will be in for an overload of blood, guts, and bullets.
The film is set to release on 08/15/14.
The movie is written and directed by David Ayer and the noteworthy cast includes Arnold Schwarzenegger, Terrence Howard, Sam Worthington, Mireille Enos, Olivia Williams, Joe Manganiello, Max Martini, Josh Holloway, Harold Perrineau, Daniel Moncada, Martin Donovan, and Ralf Moeller.
Great cast, great director, and it looks like it will be a great action flick.
The film is set to release on 04/11/14.
Escape Plan (2013)
During the 80s and 90s, Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger were action movie kings. However, up until recent years, they had never made a movie together.
I watched Stallone being interviewed by David Letterman the other day, and Stallone revealed that he and Schwarzenegger used to absolutely hate each other. They would always have to one-up each other. Now, I’m thinking, wouldn’t it have been great if at some point when the two actors were enemies, they actually played enemies on screen. People definitely would have paid to see that. I know I would have.
Something must have helped Stallone and Schwarzenegger resolve their differences because Escape Plan is the third movie that they have made together in the last three years, and the fourth one is on the way in 2014.
Escape Plan is about a prison escape artist (Sylvester Stallone) who has made a career breaking out of maximum security prisons all over the US. One day, he gets a job offer that he cannot refuse that lands him in a prison that was built using a book that he had written as a guide to building escape-proof prisons.
The film was directed by Mikael Hafstrom and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel, Amy Ryan, Vincent D’Onofrio, Vinnie Jones, Matt Gerald, Faran Tahir, Sam Neill, Caitriona Balfe, and 50 Cent.
Earlier this year, Stallone and Schwarzenegger both proved that they can still be action heroes, even in their upper 60s. Stallone did it in Bullet to the Head (2012) and Schwarzenegger did it in The Last Stand (2013). Escape Plan was better than each of those movies. Each actor looked better physically, and they both carried themselves very well. Maybe it was because they were both in the film together and they continued to try to outdo each other again. Whatever it was, it worked.
Escape Plan exceeded my expectations. The movie was a welcome, unpredictable surprise. It had a lot of original ideas mixed with a few classics, for old time sake.
Caviezel and Jones had very fun supporting roles. 50 Cent somehow manages to keep weaseling his way into films, and I swear that he is always trying to ruin them. He was terrible, as usual.
It was delightful to see Sly and Ahnuld cracking skulls in the same movie. If you were ever a fan of their movies in the past, you won’t be able to help but like this movie.
I rate this movie an 8.5 on a scale of 1-10.
Buy, rent, or run? Buy.
Bullet to the Head (2012)
This is another movie that I skipped seeing in the theatre because I was uncertain that the aging main character could make the movie worth watching.
The senior action movie stars keep making movies and I think that audiences are beginning to question whether or not these old guys are just too old for the parts that they are playing. In this case, Sylvester Stallone is the main character.
I respect my elders, and these guys rule! However, if they keep making action films, I will probably keep waiting until those movies are released on DVD before I watch them. (Bruce Willis is the younger of the mentioned bunch, but can still be questionable.) There are always exceptions, but right off the bat, their old age is not working in their favor.
Stallone has had the right idea by bringing all of the old geezers together for his Expendables movies, but in this day and age, if there is one old headliner then it better be in the right movie.
All 3 movies mentioned lost a lot of money:
The Last Stand (2013) lost 18 million dollars.
A Good Day to Die Hard (2013) lost 25 million dollars.
Bullet to the Head (2012) lost 46 million dollars.
Bullet to the Head is about a ruthless hit man (Sylvester Stallone) who goes on a rampage tracking down the men responsible for the murder of his partner in crime. He is a one-man wrecking ball out for revenge. Along the way, he teams up with a cop who happens to be tracking the same people.
The film was directed by Walter Hill and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Sung Kang, Jason Momoa, Christian Slater, Jon Seda, Sarah Shahi, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Holt McCallany, and Brian Van Holt.
Like the title suggests, Bullet to the Head brutally gets to the point early on and the graphic violence continues throughout.
The film is fast-paced and loaded with tons of great and for the most part, believable action.
The movie very much deserves the R-rating as there is a lot of language, nudity, and very realistic blood and guts. There are in fact, many people that end up taking a bullet to the head and or the rest of their body.
As with most action movies, not all of the characters get fully developed, but the action and witty dialogue make up for what is missing.
The film accomplished what it set out to do and that was to be explosive.
Even at his age, Stallone carries himself well in perhaps his most gruesome role yet. He is a stone cold, no nonsense, sarcastically funny killer. It’s almost like he flipped a switch and became somebody else. The rest of the cast is likable, but Stallone takes over and makes it a one-man show.
Compared to The Last Stand and A Good Day to Die Hard, in my opinion, Bullet to the Head is the better film. Ironically it lost a lot more money than the other movies and it was probably the most underrated of the bunch. Stallone also gave a better performance than Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
If you enjoy rooting for the bad guy, then this film is for you.
I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.
Buy, rent or run? Buy.
The Last Stand (2013)
Arnold Schwarzenegger is back, again. He must have gone a little heavy on the spray tan and make-up because his face looks like a tanned piece of aged leather, but he’s back. I held off seeing this movie in the theatre because I was not sure if Ahnuld could pull this one off.
The Last Stand is about a drug lord that escapes from protective custody and heads for the Mexican border. The only thing standing in his way of freedom is small town Sheriff Ray Owen (Schwarzenegger) and his band of misfit deputies.
The film is directed by Kim Jee-Woon and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Forest Whitaker, Johnny Knoxville, Luis Guzman, Peter Stormare, Eduardo Noriega, Jaimie Alexander, Zach Gilford, and Harry Dean Stanton, and Genesis Rodriguez.
The film does not have a lot of character development, but there is a bit of stupid comedy and tons of action. The special effects are actually quite good and they help to make the film enjoyable. There are endless car chases, bullets are flying, people and things are exploding, blood is spattering, and fans of 90s action movies are applauding.
Schwarzenegger, Knoxville, Guzman, and Stormare all make this action movie more of a comedy not to take too seriously.
Whitaker seems to be the only person in the film taking his part seriously and it fits his character like a glove.
Overall, the film was better than I expected it to be. It’s a bit predictable at times, but for the type of movie that it is, that is to be expected. It certainly seemed like they had fun making it. Even though Schwarzenegger looked a little goofy, he pulled his character off quite well and it was fun to see him acting again.
I rate this movie a 7 on a scale of 1-10.
Buy, rent, or run? Rent.
If you liked The Last Stand, then you will probably enjoy:
Happy Birthday to Arnold Schwarzenegger!
Ahnuld turns 66 years old today.
The duo will also return for another go-round in the movie The Expendables 3 (2014).
Earlier this year Ahnuld was in The Last Stand (2013).
He will be back in Terminator 5 (2015).
Click on any of the links below to read my Arnold Schwarzenegger movie reviews:
When I think of Sylvester Stallone, I think of his characters Rocky Balboa and John Rambo. Balboa is from his 5 Rocky films, beginning with Rocky (1976) and Rambo is from his 4 Rambo movies, beginning with First Blood (1982).
In more recent years, Stallone has gathered together his fellow aging action heroes. They have all banded together to form The Expendables trilogy. The Expendables (2010) started it all. The Expendables 3 is planned to release in the summer of 2014.
It appears as if old age is not going to slow down Sylvester. He is 67 and he continues to make action films. This October he will be trying to break out of prison with Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie Escape Plan (2013). This Christmas Stallone will be boxing Robert De Niro in the film Grudge Match (2013). The Italian Stallion vs. The Raging Bull. That promises to be a Christmas present worth waiting for. My money is on Rocky.
Click on the links below to read my Sylvester Stallone Movie Reviews:
Escape Plan (2013) (click on the title for my full review.)
Grandpa Stallone and Grandpa Schwarzenegger are both at it again. This time Sylvester plays a prison escape artist. After finding a way to break out of a number of prisons, he designed a new prison where escaping is near impossible. Of course, eventually he finds himself framed and locked up in the very prison that he created. Arnold is on the inside with him. Now Stallone must breakout in order to track down the party responsible for getting him locked up.
The movie reminds me a bit of Face/Off (1997) simply because in that film John Travolta‘s character (with Nicolas Cage‘s face) agrees to go under cover and be locked up in a high-tech prison. Eventually the only people that know he is undercover find themselves dead and he is forced to try to escape if he wants to get back to his real life.
How does 50 Cent keep getting parts in movies?
Although Stallone and Schwarzenegger are both maybe a little too ancient to be making this type of movie, I think that somehow they will pull it off. Either way, I will be there to give you my take on it.
The film is set to release on 10/18/13.