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Old August 8 2009, 01:06 AM   #80
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Re: G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra - Grading & Discussion

I rate GI Joe as average.

I had very, very low expectations for the movie going in. The trailer didn't impress me, nor did most of the casting, except for Ray Park. I was a major fan of GI Joe: A Real American Hero cartoon, not so much the 80's comics, and the trailers and info I was hearing about this movie sounded like apostasy. Plus, I got an early peek at CC's mask courtesy of this board and I damn near went ballistic.

But after I bought the GI Joe Season 1 set and looked back on the history of GI Joe, I can imagine that an older generation might've looked the same way on the 80's Joes that I revered. With that mindset, I tried to give the Joe movie a fair shake.

I thought it was pretty mindless, loud action, a little too CGI heavy at points. But looking back at the cartoon, with its fantastical elements, I can't fault most of the super hi-tech in the film, though I'm still not sold on the accelerator suits. And I don't get why they let the rookies wear them? I know I should leave logic and reason behind with this film, but it was a question that popped into my head.

I thought the Joes handled their roles fairly well. Marlon Wayans wasn't as bad as I thought he would be. I liked his flirtation with Scarlett. Hopefully a romance will develop there. Duke was okay, though I don't think he was as dashing as the cartoon Duke, though true to the cartoon, Tatum's Duke also had a penchant for getting captured. Rachel Nichols was quite the vision as Scarlett. I thought Breaker and Heavy Duty also had nice chemistry with the team, though they didn't do much. Ray Park was great as Snake Eyes, but I didn't like the molded look of his suit, particularly the lips. At first I thought that Dennis Quaid was a good choice for Hawk, but I think he overdid it a bit. I wished for the quieter gravitas of Bruce Greenwood's Pike.

As for Cobra, Eccelston (?) was fine as Destro, though I miss the deep bass voice of the cartoon version. Sienna Miller was passable as the Baroness, though I would've preferred the colder, hardcore East European (?) version from the cartoon. The cartoon Baroness was perhaps more over the top than Miller, but far more ruthless. I rolled my eyes at the Duke-Baroness relationship, but as the movie went on I didn't totally gag because it opens up some new territory for the characters to explore. Also, I felt a little better about Miller-Baroness's somewhat predictable, but totally out of character, change of heart after the flashback with Rex injecting her with the nanomites. I was wondering how Miller's character became such a villainous badass as I was watching the film, but the nanomites explain it. I was prepared to hate Rex, but I thought Levitt did a decent job. The voice was different than Chris Latta's, but creepy enough. I still don't like Cobra Commander's mask, but I didn't hate it as much when I saw it on the big screen as I did on the toy. It seemed a bit more metallic and somewhat in line with the Neo-Vipers.

I really liked the Neo-Vipers. They were pretty badass, and I liked their mask-helmets. I wish they had done a better job though accessorizing them for the winter base. I thought Vosloo made for a good Zartan. But I think my favorite Cobra was Storm Shadow. Watching the cartoons again, I realized how lame they made Storm Shadow. This movie corrected that. SS is pretty ruthless and far more effective than he ever was in the cartoon. The Snake Eyes-Storm Shadow fights were perhaps the best thing in the movie.

I think the ending was a pretty confident move on Sommers part. I hope he gets another chance, though I'm not sure if I want to see another installment. It is GI Joe, but it isn't my GI Joe.

But just in case I change my mind about a sequel...If there is a sequel I hope they bring in Gung Ho, Shipwreck, Flint, and Lady Jaye for the Joes. A cameo from Sgt. Slaughter wouldn't hurt either. For Cobra, I want to see Major Bludd-he was often unsung but I thought he was hard core. I wouldn't mind seeing Firefly, the Dreadnoks, Tomax and Xamot either.
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