I’ve just returned from seeing Expendables 2 and loved every minute of it despite what most critics say. True it is way over the top and non- stop action, explosions galore and minimal plot, but it’s not supposed to be taken seriously and all the characters perform with tongue firmly in cheek and with macho excess and lots of laughs among the mayhem.
The story finds Sylvestor Stallone and his band of psychotic mercenaries featuring Jason Statham, Dolph Lundgren, Terry Crews, Jet Li, Randy Couture and newcomers Liam Hensworth and Yu Nan. Add to that Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwartzeneggar, Chuck Norris and Jan Claude van Damme as the bad guy for once.
The plot is simple. Mr. Church (Bruce Willis) a highly secretive CIA agent, recruits Stallone’s gang to repay a debt he owes him and to find six tons of weapons grade plutonium hidden in a mine in the Ukraine left over from the cold war and find it before it falls into the wrong hands.
On their way the ragtag crew of death and destruction encounter Claude Van Damme playing a ruthless, sadistic mercenary with his own army planning on getting to the plutonium and selling It to the highest bidder. When one of Stallone’s crew is killed in their encounters by Van Damme’s crew you can imagine what happens. Bullets fly everywhere with them in the middle and nobody being hit while bad guys get blown to bits.
It’s fun seeing Chuck Norris and Arnold popping up when you least expect it and making their small roles seem larger. There are great lines thrown out to the audience with a wink. Such lines as when Arnold and Bruce Willis are ducking for cover from hailing bullets, Arnold says to him,” You stay here I’LL BE BACK” referring to his classic line from Terminator. Willis replies, “You’ve been back enough I’ll go.” As he goes Arnold says to him. “yippiee Ki Yay” from Willis’ Did Hard character. When they see a dilapidated old plane they have to fly Stallone says ‘that should be in a museum” to which Arnold replies, “We all should.” Look for a great fight to the finish between Stallone and Van Damme.
Liam Hensworth is the brother of Chris Hemsworth who appeared as Thor in the recent Avengers movie. It’s a fun, over the top movie with a line of macho stars you’ll never see the likes of again. Check it out.