4/10 Following the worst movie Stephen Sommers ever made, “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra” and one of the worst directors working today, Jon M. Chu’s 2013 follow up, “G.I. Joe: Retaliation”, the bar for this franchise was set lower than lobster crap for this movie. While it is indeed a step up over the first two cinematic embarrassments, “G.I. Joe: Snake Eyes” misses out on the fun that those movies attempted and exchanges enjoyment for an overly serious, forgettable disappointment. My expectations were so low for this that it ended up being better than I thought it would, as there were still some aspects that the movie pulls off. Most of the cast is giving it their all, the production design was surprisingly impressive and the score was decent. The one thing I admired most, which has become increasingly rare in Hollywood these days was the lack of a political agenda. For once a movie studio gave us some mindless escapism without browbeating the viewer down with political messaging and propaganda that studios like Netflix and Disney constantly berate us with. The story won’t blow anybody away but following the other G.I. Joe movies, this story is leaps and bounds ahead of those ones. I can’t tell if this is a positive or a negative but this doesn’t even feel like a G.I. Joe movie. On one hand, since it is one, you could be disappointed that besides a couple character names and a mysterious terrorist organization called Cobra, this is just a generic action flick. On the other hand, since the G.I. Joe movies have been so horrendous and basing movies off of action figures and cheesy cartoons is never a good idea, part of me is grateful that it feels a little separated from its source material. As for why this movie ultimately fails, there is plenty of evidence. The characters are all fairly bland and generic, especially the supporting characters. Our leads get some backstory and motivations but they are stripped of any and all charisma so we still don’t care about them as much as we should. The editing and cinematography have problems, especially when it comes to action scenes. The gold standard of shooting action scenes is the “John Wick” franchise where you sit the camera back and watch the fight choreography unfold. You are able to see what is happening and the actors and stunt men who have trained for months are able to show off their hard work and dedication. Yet so many action movies (like this one) do quick cuts and constantly move the camera in every direction, making it hard to see what the Hell is going on. Add this to the fact that all but one action scene takes place at night and now you really have trouble seeing what is happening to which character. This sloppy style doesn’t benefit the cast nor the audience. One action scene near the beginning in a warehouse setting had circular flares on the camera lens multiple times that took me out of the movie with how distracting they were. The plot also contains many dumb elements. Our protagonists are trying to protect a magical rock called the “Jewel of the Sun”, which has an insane amount of power. Fair enough. Yet the security protecting what is supposed to be their greatest mission in life is so lax that it is embarrassing. First of all, it is extremely easy to find and not hidden at all (having a decoy be there and the real one somewhere far away where no one would think to look would have been much smarter). There are some giant CGI anacondas that can tell if your heart is pure or not (pretty ridiculous). They could have thrown the “Jewel of the Sun” into the anaconda pit and anyone looking to steal it would get killed by the anacondas and anyone there to protect it would remain unharmed. During one scene with a security breach, literally everyone runs off to find who breached their security, leaving not a single person with the “Jewel of the Sun” to watch over it, which is stupid on an insulting level. There are some clichés and stupid moments but since the movie is so forgettable and generic, you won’t remember them for long. While still a step up, this is a cinematic franchise that no one is passionate about and just because you have a recognizable IP doesn’t mean people will forgive poorly written scripts, lifeless characters, product placement and poorly shot fight scenes.

#DoYouEvenHasBro? / #SnakeNews / #GIJoke / #SnakeAndModel / #ANotSoSimpleFavor / #DeadlyOrNot

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