Directed by: Patrick Hughes
Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Antonio Banderas, Jet Li, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Kelsey Grammer, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Kellan Lutz, Ronda Rousey, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Robert Davi, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger
Distributed by: Lionsgate
Running time: 126 minutes
Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars
Let me warn you before you read this that I am not your typical crticial. When it comes to action movies, I practically don’t give a shit about plots and character development. I got in waiting to see if they blow shit up that shouldn’t blow up and if so I dig it. That being said “The Expendables 3” was freaking fantastic! I was really hoping that I was going to like it but I ended up liking it more than I even though. When you approach a film like this, which is a second sequel you have to be cautious but this series has yet to let down yet. In fact, I feel that the first film is actually the weakest of the three films. The second film capitalized on the cheesiness of the idea of “The Expendables 3” and just had fun. “The Expendables 3” is a nice balance of the previous two films and nails every scene. There is no slow down or bullshit. It is just non-stop action and funny ass one-lines!! As the summer goes away and we enter the season of “award films”, this is a great last “woo hah” to sum up the summer season.
Let me just take a minute and list the entire line up for the film this time around. We have Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Antonio Banderas, Jet Li, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Kelsey Grammer, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Kellan Lutz, Ronda Rousey, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Robert Davi, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford and Arnold Schwarzenegger. I wasn’t sure what to expect with the younger cast coming in but they really worked so well with the “old-timers”. Ronda Rousey is especially bad-ass…why isn’t she playing the role of Wonder Woman!! Stallone is actually at his best in this film and as he nears 70, he has never been more bad-ass. We haven’t seen much of Antonio Banderas recently and I realized how awesome he is, especially in this as he steals the show and is absolutely hysterical. Same goes for Wesley Snipes, who recently just got out of jail but really rocks in this film! Please make “Blade 4” BTW Wesley! Harrison Ford does what he does best…plays a great grouchy guy. Lastly, Mel Gibson is back baby! This guy plays a fantastic baddie! Loved every scene he was in. I didn’t think they would be able to top the cast of the second but the certainly did.
Like I said about the plot to me it really takes a back seat when you have about 20 superstars sharing the big-screen and stealing every scene. We start off with the team on a new mission to rescue a former Expendable (Snipes) from a moving train. After picking him up, they head off to complete a seamingly simple job but they end up crossing paths with Conrad Stonebanks (Gibson), who Barney Ross (Stallone) believed to have killed years ago. Stonebanks also happens to be one of the team’s co-founders. That is pretty much the important stuff that you need to know here. Ross makes it his mission take down Stonebanks and visa versa. Shit blows up and everyone has a blast doing it. The action is A-class in this sequel. When I first saw that this was going to be PG-13, I was really bummed but they really did it up right. It was violent as hell and action-packed. Parents be warned this is a very hard PG-13, let me repeat there is A LOT of violence. Of course though if you are coming to see “The Expendables”, you would expect that despite it’s rating. This is a great example of how an action film should be…action packed from opening credits to finale.
When I saw the first “The Expendables”, I had no idea that this would be a franchise. I was skeptical for the sequel but it paid off very well. For the third film, I was the same way, I haven’t seen much hype surrounding it but it was easily the best in the franchise. There is no plans for the Expendable-train to slow down either since producer Ari Lerner has already confirmed plans for “The Expendables 4” and “The Expendables 5” are in the works as well as the spinoff “The ExpendaBelles”. There has even been confirmation already that former James Bond, Pierce Brosnan will star in a future The Expendables sequel and also Hulk Hogan wrote on twitter that he will be in the fourth film as well. So there is plenty more to come from this franchise and I feel like it is just heating up. As long as guys like Stallone can still kick some ass, I am sure that they are going to keep making these…and that is quite awesome in my books.