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Tomas Gallucci

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G. I. Joe: Rise of the Cobra should be Retitled Sloppy Boring Joe [Sep. 1st, 2009|11:58 pm]
Tomas Gallucci
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[music |Hans Zimmer - Angels & Demons]



Tinseltown has failed to produce a real hit this year and G. I. Joe: Rise of the Cobra is no exception. Sure Angels & Demons came close to being a home run, if only an infield one. Even the much hyped Watchmen suffered from a badly edited theatrical cut as LA continues to dump on itself, licking its wounds from last year's strikes and this year's recession.

G. I. Joe isn't anything new or spectacular; it is, in fact, quite the opposite: overused CGI, actors chosen for looks, not ability; too many plot lines that turns into tiring exposition; lots of pointless effects; unneeded comedic relief; pointless love interests and plenty of eye candy.


The first clue that this movie was going to be a waste of time was Dennis Quaid is featured prominently in the trailer as General Hawk. Quaid must have thought this would be his redemption movie that would turn his career as audiences saw him in a new light, much like what Stranger Than Fiction did for Will Ferral, but alas, that's not the case. Quaid sure does look tough in poses for press junkets but as soon as he opens his mouth, it's game over. Let's face it: Quaid has always played soft-spoken character roles. In a phrase, he's no Bruce Willis.




Then you have Channing Tatum as Duke. What a waste. He simultaneously tries to be serious and a pretty boy, Brad Pitt look alike and doesn't do either well. His only saving grace is that he's acting beside a hugely miscast Marlon Wayans. Tatum is eager, but only time will tell if he's talented.

Marlon Wayans being miscast is quite the understatement. It was like watching Eddie Murphy in Meet Dave all over again, which is, to say the least, painful. It's not that Wayans' performance is bad in isolation; no, he gave exactly what director Stephen Sommers asked. The problem is that as advertised, G. I. Joe was a serious action film, not some blown out genre buffet.




Ripcord's love interest with Scarlet doesn't serve the film either. It plays second fiddle to Duke and Ana's relationship and hence redundant to the film's needs. It's not actually funny nor is it the stuff that a good romance is made of. It's fodder for the screen.

Next is the eye candy. Boys, this is simply a matter of hair color preference. All three girls have nice figures, so this is a matter of picking your poison, but again, this is yet another example of how you can have too much of a good thing. Granted, I used to not think that you could have too many hot girls in a film, but now I'm persuaded otherwise. Simply put, this is a film, not a porno, The girls compete with each other for screen time but there's nothing arousing about it. My personal preference has the least amount of screen time, but boy is she a site for sore eyes: Karolina Kurkova as Cover Girl.




Though it's nice to see Joseph Gordon-Levitt take on more prominent rolls, it was just creepy watching him play such a twisted character. I think he should stick to smaller, lo-budget dramas where he's done his best work: Brick, The Lookout, and Killshot. The winning performance of the film is Jonathan Pryce's President of the United States--a performance that restores prestige to the high office.

Ultimately, while sitting in the the theater, one clearly understands that the girls on the screen is fake and there's no chance in hell of meeting them much less sleeping with them and this reality is hammered into your thick skull with the horrific compositing. One gets the feeling that Sommers took the George Lucas approach: stick everyone in front of a green screen then make the movie in the computer. Every underwater shot screams "Look at me! I'm CG!"

The dizzying cinematography didn't help either. Granted, you don't get the motion sickness that the shot of the LHC in Angels & Demons. The fights were pretty good, but the fly-wheeling, whiz banging, zip-zoom-flying that passed for establishing and tracking shots made you wonder if this wasn't some kid's plaything.




And that's the real rub of the film. This was a movie that was supposed to be about some kid's playthings from years ago. Of course, Paramount couldn't keep their grubby marketing paws away, so naturally the film got modernized to sell to an audience of sheeple. This wasn't a decent modernization like with Iron Man. No, this was another rehash of How NOT to make a comic book movie.

This movie tries to be all things to all men an fails miserably at it. Yes, there's something for the whole family to enjoy here but the parts just don't make a good whole. Even Alan Silvestri score is forgettable--I can't hum one bar. For crying out loud, we're talking about the guy who wrote the Cast Away score.
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Comments:
From: highebree
2009-09-02 02:49 am (UTC)

Teh Movieez

What did you think of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince? I really, really enjoyed it and I think parts of the score are absolutely breathtaking. (I didn't see it in 3D, so my reviews are from the 2D version.)

I have to disagree with you on the G.I. Joe movie. I enjoyed it. I went into it expecting a big badda boom summer movie and that's what I got. It was a fun ride. I won't be buying it to own. I did buy the version of Boom Boom Pow that played during the credits. :D

My favorite movie this summer actually turned out to be Julie & Julia. It is a very gentle comedy that completely surprised me when I saw it. I was expecting a typical "watch it in the middle of the week with my free AMC Moviewatcher's ticket when the theater is empty" kind of movie. It was wonderful! I love both actresses and I thought they were perfect in their roles. I left it in a excellent mood, immediately called and recommended it to some friends and went back to see it again the following week (when, I might add, the theater was less empty than it was the previous week.)

I agree with you on Angels & Demons. So close.
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-02 09:12 am (UTC)

Re: Teh Movieez

I was thinking about you just the other day and had thought that I had seen the lat of you on LJ. this is a pleasant surprise.

I don't do Harry Potter.

As you read, G. I. Joe didn't crack my tractor.

Julie & Julia is my next film to review. I had hoped for more in that film, but it failed to deliver for me as well.
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[User Picture]From: ehowton
2009-09-02 07:27 am (UTC)
Unlike your review of A&D, I agree with every. single. point. you make on this one, despite having actually not been made physically ill by the film when I saw it.

You hit everything, accurately.

So accurately and dead-on in fact, that I wonder if your review of A&D might have been similarly applicable had you read the book.

I even agree with you about the score.

Unfortunately, it looks as those most of your images are not displaying.
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-04 11:29 am (UTC)
Just when I expect a fight out of you, you agree with me. Makes life interesting.

I thought you blogged about taking your kids to see this movie and how they liked it and you liked it. But now I can't find that post.

I wonder if your review of A&D might have been similarly applicable had you read the book.
Like you like to argue about scores being separate entities from the film, so too are books from the films they are turned into.

I even agree with you about the score.
And that's sad. This is a guy who's got a body of hits with Bob Zemmickis.

Unfortunately, it looks as those most of your images are not displaying.
Tried a new hosting solution as I'm afraid that Xanga will die any day now. Are they all working now?
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[User Picture]From: celtmanx
2009-09-02 08:52 am (UTC)
"Tinseltown has failed to produce a real hit this year..."

You forgot to see the new Star Trek movie didn't you??? I was a real skeptic, being a die hard fan but even I liked it. By the time I got to see it, it had already been out for over a month and most films don't stay at the box office more than 2 weeks.

Edited at 2009-09-02 03:44 pm (UTC)
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From: highebree
2009-09-02 01:27 pm (UTC)
HOLY COW! I forgot about the Star Trek movie too!

...*wonders if that's a bad sign* Maybe because it came out so early in the season.

I loved the Star Trek movie! I'm not a Trekkie, but my husband and parents are and they loved it too. Well, hubby didn't think Spock would have gotten involved while he was in school, but other than that. ....that and the whole space/time continuum bit.

*looks at Schpydurx*
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[User Picture]From: celtmanx
2009-09-02 01:54 pm (UTC)
He doesn't do Sci-Fi. He thinks it is an invalid genre. I.E. He won't get the humor in this Icon.

Edited at 2009-09-02 05:56 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-02 04:13 pm (UTC)
Actually, I do know enough to get your avatar, but i don't find it that funny.

Edited at 2009-09-02 08:14 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: celtmanx
2009-09-03 09:52 pm (UTC)
That's because you don't do Sci-Fi and Comdey hence your lack of comprehension of the avatar.
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From: highebree
2009-09-05 01:45 am (UTC)
*giggles*
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-04 11:32 am (UTC)
Great avatar!
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From: highebree
2009-09-04 04:48 pm (UTC)
Thank you! : )

What did you think of the new Terminator movie?
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-04 05:10 pm (UTC)
I didn't want to go listen to people quote the Christian Bale rant halfway through the film so I didn't go.
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From: highebree
2009-09-05 01:43 am (UTC)
I have no idea what you mean with that, but ok.

Did you see Charlie Wilson's War? I keep meaning to ask if you've heard James Newton Howard's "Turning the Tide" from that movie. It is magnificent! The Messiah with Arabic drums/percussion/strings accompanying it. Absolutely brilliant. I HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend it.

Edited at 2009-09-05 05:48 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-05 09:42 am (UTC)
Christian Bale rant during filming of Terminator Salvation.

Yes, I've seen Charlie Wilson's War a couple of times now. What a fantastic film! I'm going to write about it in an upcoming DVD shootout post.

I didn't bother to look up the score because i didn't think that would be on the disc for some reason, but now I shall. You wouldn't happen to have a copy, would you?
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From: highebree
2009-09-05 03:53 pm (UTC)
re: rant - what a winning man. *rolls eyes* Moron.

I do have a copy of that song from the soundtrack (I only bought the one song.) How could I get it to you? I downloaded it from iTunes. I will gladly share it with you if there's a way!!
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-05 03:58 pm (UTC)
Bale does have a point, though he went overboard.

Please send me an email. professortom is the name on my Gmail account.
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-04 11:31 am (UTC)
You forgot to see the new Star Trek movie didn't you???
I hate repeating myself, but Tinseltown has failed to produce a real hit this year.

most films don't stay at the box office more than 2 weeks.
That really depends on the metro. Pixar's Robots played for over a year in Nashville.
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[User Picture]From: celtmanx
2009-09-05 12:43 am (UTC)
How can you judge what you did not see???

Look it up the national average for a movie release is 2 weeks regardless of the metro.

The only movie that would break that would be the Rocky Horror Picture show which has been shown on Saturday nights at movie theaters across the country since it debuted in 1975. Since it is a great movie and not a drama, I'm sure you didn't see it.


Edited at 2009-09-05 04:50 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: ehowton
2009-09-02 11:21 am (UTC)
Also - thank you for the Amazon link to the Cast Away score! I've been trying to figure out a way to get it to display from the Amazon main page, but have been thus far unable to figure it out.
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-02 04:15 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you enjoyed the link, but the rest of your comment makes no sense. What are you trying to get to display from the main page? What is it?
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[User Picture]From: darkest_writer
2009-09-03 09:32 pm (UTC)
I'm glad I didn't go and see this like I was supposed to. I didn't waste ten bucks :P

So Julie and Julia failed to deliver? I can't wait to see why :)
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-04 11:24 am (UTC)
I sat down to write that review and 100 other blog posts. I didn't get word one written. I suck.
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[User Picture]From: darkest_writer
2009-09-04 02:18 pm (UTC)
yes you do suck ;)
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-04 02:25 pm (UTC)
But I thought you liked it when I did that!
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[User Picture]From: darkest_writer
2009-09-04 03:22 pm (UTC)
I do, hence the winky face ;)
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From: bry_the_heretic
2009-09-04 11:20 am (UTC)
Still haven't seen it. I've been hearing a lot of bad shit about it though. G.I. Joe has been my favorite childhood franchise for around 27 years now. I fear seeing it now. Because A) They'll kill it all for me. B) I may like it and have another secret guilty pleasure.
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[User Picture]From: schpydurx
2009-09-04 11:23 am (UTC)
Do the right thing. Don't see it.
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