The Expendables 2 (2012)

The Expendables 2 (2012)
The Expendables 2 (2012) DVD / Blu-ray

By: Bill Arceneaux (Three Beers) –

I’m not sure if I have an all time favorite action star. Sure, most people would pick Arnold or Stallone, but that would be too obvious for me. So would Bruce Lee – a guy most deserving of the favorite title. Maybe what I like more is the legend; the kind of action roles the actor chose, and how he handled them. In that case, I might pick Charles Bronson (seriously), if only for Death Wish 3.

All-time picks aside, most of the top action stars each have their own kind of awesome legend behind them. And, when you get them in one big movie together…

A legend, Mr. Wayne…

The Expendables 2 is probably the movie I’ve reviewed for MovieBoozer that has the least amount of plot. Sure, there’s something about revenge and stopping a guy from selling some plutonium, but that’s not what the film cares about, or what it wants the audience to care about; it’s concerned with images of the famous and most popular action heroes of all time standing side by side shooting the biggest guns possible. THAT’S. IT. And, you know what? That’s all it needs to be.

A Toast

For me, an action movie is best when it is completely ridiculous. Now, what we get here isn’t 80’s style fun, but it does have its share of over-the-top-ness; LOTS of blood spurts, people getting gunned to pieces, one-liners are thrown out, a few villains get decapitated, etc. If your movie lacks much of an excuse to exist, you better give me something to look at.

Arnold deserves some recognition here. Having just come off of a political run, we finally get to see him doing what comes naturally. Before the movie, a trailer for The Last Stand gave me a taste of what he has in store. It ought to be killer.

Oh, and Chuck-Fucking Norris; a crazy conservative in real life, but an action star with such a badass legend – makes and delivers in the best possible way an actual #ChuckNorrisFact! This, to me, was worth the ticket price alone!

All true, and all deadly

Beer Two

I never saw the first movie in the franchise, but I got this feeling that it was somehow the better written of the two. While the above stuff is great and all, the rest of the movie is made up of wink wink moments meant for nothing more than nostalgia exploitation. It might as well have been called Aging Action Stars Shoot at Shit 2: Catchphrases Get Spouted Off as Well. Whoever “wrote” this got the easiest paycheck ever.

The only real “story” in the movie is given to Liam Hemsworth, and he gives a performance worthy of Paul Walker (Fail). Good thing the other guys look good carrying guns and making quips.

Beer Three

Even though he’s only starring and not directing this time, Stallone gets the majority of screen time. He also gets many scenes where all he does is stare off into the distance and think really hard. Cause we didn’t get enough of that in Rocky Balboa or Rambo 4 (both great flicks). At one point, Stallone tells Statham that he has a big ego. Hmmm.

No Ego Here…


It really is too bad that the late Charles Bronson wasn’t in it. Though I bet all we’d see him do is shoot at random bad guys and smile at the camera. Hey – it is what it is.


Drinking Game

Take a Drink: if you thought the movie could’ve used more Terry Crews.

Take a Drink: when Van Damme shows up with an even thicker accent than you remember him having.

Take a Drink: knowing that Chuck Norris, even in his 70’s, can still kill the crap out of you.

Bonus #ChuckNorris Fact:

Charlie Sheen may have “tiger blood”, but Chuck Norris could have Sheen’s blood right now – he just doesn’t feel like it. Yet.

About Bill Arceneaux

Independent film critic from New Orleans and member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association (SEFCA).

One comment

  1. Julio De Francisco

    What other 80s action stars are missing from the roster? Kurt Russel, Steven Seagal, Zeus, Hulk Hogan, Kevin Costner — Expendables 3?

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