MOVIE REVIEW - The Expendables 3

on 16 August 2014.

This version of this series, and this entire series is by no means perfect. But so what?  This and they are complete escapism. So let's pop some popcorn.

The Expendables 3 in many ways is not a whole lot different that the first two.  And then again, it is very different.  The same basic cast is back, Stallone, Statham, Li, Schwarzenegger, Crews, Lundgren, Coutre, and others.  But this time they bring along, Kelsey Grammar, Harrison Ford, Antonio Bandaras, Wesley Snipes and even Mel Gibson.  You might think with this much age it could turn into The Expandables!  But it doesn't. Everyone looks pretty good.  So about every single former action movie hero is in this movie. There was also rumors that this will be the final one, but I'm guessing not, as this is set up well for more.

What they have done is pretty darn smart.  They have always made fun of their own ages, and that's part of its "charm."   It's never taken too seriously.  But now they have cultivated a new and younger band of Expendables who have newer and more relevant skill sets to help our band of mercenary doo-gooders fight the "off the books" cases they take on.  They include but are not limited to MMA Champion, Rhonda Rousey.  It nice awareness that there has to be a changing of the guard at some part.  We now have the largest band of Expendables we have ever had.

The plot is not really important for this article, as it is a popcorn movie.  This is what it is. It's action packed, it has violence, and long action scenes.  This is not a movie for everyone for sure.  But from a movie making standpoint, this series is pretty savvy. They know who their audience is, and they are looking forward to who they want it to be.  Always humor mixed in with the action, and always self depreciating humor. 

But it's more than that. Stallone and crew have figured out and found a niche. Since superhero movies are all the rage,they are cashing in on this trend without many even noticing.  This is a superhero movie where people are actually the superheros and not some flying robot, or web shooting kid, or the like.  The story lines are not the "end of times" themed so many computer generated action flicks are either.  They have a plot line that is exaggerated for sure, but it's not the end of the world.  And being honest, the violence is on par with most of the other superhero movies that are thought safer.  Certainly no worse.  The language is surprisingly tame, and somehow they figure out how to get everyone on camera.

Should be noted too, these always have an August release date to allow all of the other animated movies, superhero movies, and early summer releases to blow over and clear out, so they can clean up and they do.  That is really smart. For many, me included, these are guilty pleasure movies that take no time to make social commentary, or try to change the world, or to dazzle us with as many computer animation tricks the geeks can come up with.  Sure, this is actiony but it's honest. And this is straight forward. If you like action movies, this is amazingly refreshing as it is more like the action movies once were made

The Expendables 3. This is fast paced and fun.  A guilty pleasure movie series that somehow remains relevant and fun.  Look for 4.

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