Terry Crews

The boys are back in town!

The Iconic action stars of the 80s are back again. And this time they brought along even more fun. 80s, 90s, and even todays stars! The Expendables is a franchise that keeps growing in numbers. They are not known for their story driven cinema, or their Oscar winning performances. Its action. Nonstop, popcorn fun, action. I don’t go to these films expecting to be blown away by the script. Just the fun of seeing the stars I grew up on kicking ass! And that’s what they have delivered. The worry, is that now, The Expendables going into their 3rd film, have gone from a hard R rating, to a PG-13 in an attempt to broaden their audience. A risk if you ask me. I am the demographic for these films, if they try to gain a younger audience, they risk losing the audience they have. So was the risk worth it, well, I’d say yes it was.

This go around the Expendables return, Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. This go around they are joined by the likes of Antonio Banderas, Wesley Snipes, Kelsey Grammer, Kellun Lutz, Ronda Rousey, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Robert Davi, Mel Gibson, and Han Solo himself, Harrison Ford. Once again written by Sylvester Stallone and directed this go around by Patrick Hughes. After the first 2, I love both installments. And actually believe the 2nd is better. The puns are great, the action if awesome. And the 3rd installment doesn’t really disappoint.

The story follows Barney Ross, as he trades in his old brethren for a younger team, in hopes to spare the lives of his Expendables. He goes up against a founding father of the Expendables, Conrad Stonebanks (Gibson) after the extraction of Stonebanks goes wrong, Barney and must once again enlist the back up of his brothers at arms.

Right of the bat, Gibson is the best thing about this film. He tows the line of crazy and psychopath so well, proving himself to still be one of the premier actors in the game. I for one hope this resurrects his career because it was fun seeing him again. There is a scene toward the middle of the film where he explains his motives to Stallone, it is almost chilling to watch Gibson upstage everyone.

If Gibson is the best part of this film, Banderas is a close second. As a nearly comic relief character, he channels his Desperado days and adds immense amount of humor and fun. You don’t know whether you want to kill this guy or die of laughing yourself. Rousey was used perfectly. Think Gina Carano in Fast 6. Snipes looked great, and makes me hope for a Blade 4. Harrison Ford takes over for Bruce Willis in this role, and actually doesn’t phone it in like Willis’ Church character in the past.

The PG-13 rating doesn’t necessarily hurt the film. Yes there are times when you wish there was terribly fake blood spatter. But they don’t skimp on the action! however if you watch closely you kind of see that there was probably blood in the original cut and makes you think there will be a director’s cut DVD.

There is an actual bit of character development in this film. The 2nd act of the film spends most its time developing the newbies, and Banderas. Problem is, that’s not why we are there. I want random explosions. I don’t necessarily need the details. It almost drags a bit in the film, but then the 3rd act hits and we back to what we want from these films.

In the end, if you want deep story, logic, and believability, then yes you are going to whine and cry about this movie. But if you can sit back, and enjoy the stars we grew up and some new faces, doing what they do best, then you are going to have a Good time at the theater. That’s right, thanks to a .2 bonus for a throwback Arnold “Get to tha choppa” line, I’m giving Expendables 3 a Jeebus score of 4.1.

Draft Day

One of the most epic days in the NFL season, Draft Day! All the trades, all the excitement, all the anarchy! Players drop, players rise, paychecks, losses, diamonds in the rough! Sound exciting? Well it is, and I’m not just talking about May 8 2014, oddly enough, I’m talking about the brand new Kevin Costner film! Directed Ivan Reitman, and starring Kevin Costner, Jennifer Garner, Denis Leary, Frank Langella, Sam Elliot, Chadwick Boseman, Terry Crews, Josh Pence, Diddy, and Arian Foster making his film debut!

Draft day follows the events in the biggest day of Cleveland Browns GM Sonny Weaver Jr. (Costner) career, as he desperately tries to build a team that he can call his own. Stressed out with life issues, and a trade early on that he regrets all day, trying to rationalize his decisions and save his own future with the Browns. Looking at the number 1 pick and the Heisman trophy winning QB (Pence), while he has own QB (Welling), and an option of picks down the line that include a linebacker a reputation(Boseman), and a running back with a Browns legacy(Foster). At the same time he’s dealing with a girlfriend (Garner) and slightly off Mother.

Draft day is very fun film. Kevin Costner is on a roll back to top. From Man of Steel, to 3 Days to Kill, to Draft Day. Ivan Reitman truly hits this one out of the park. His mix of comedy, drama, and the hint of romance is just what you want in a family fun film like this one. And if you were afraid that you had to be a football fan to like it, don’t be. Yes we fans of the greatest sport on earth enjoy the film, but it’s not just the sports aspect that will keep us entertained either. The film has some rather odd cuts and cinematography. It reminded me a lot of Ang Lee’s Hulk, when it would have 3 or for different shots in one scene. The scenes shift almost like sliding glass doors.

There are few negatives. The side story of the romance, and some of the family issues didn’t necessarily need to be in the film. And can kind of drag at times. They give Costner a good amount of back story and character development, but I think the film would be just as entertaining if the film stuck with nothing but the inner workings of the NFL GMs on Draft Day. A lot of the roles are not very full, they are almost reduced to cameos. I would have liked to see more of Foster, and even a little more from Diddy.

The cast is phenomenal. I already talked about Costner, but Jennifer Garner owns her role as a woman in “man’s world” and as people try to put her down she stands her ground, and Garner gives character to the, well character. To me, the big surprise was Tom Welling I’m a huge fan of Welling, from his role as Superman, er Clark Kent. Oddly enough, he’s one of 3 actors with links to Superman, Langella played Perry White in Superman Returns, and of course Costner as Jonathan Kent in Man of Steel. Boseman brings a great amount of heart to his role. It is great to see Crews in a role a little more dramatic, with an emphasis on a little. It’s rare, but sometimes he truly can show you more. Even Foster does a great job in his acting debut! Denis wary was perfectly cast as the coach, who left Dallas after they fell to the bottom. I was not happy with that storyline.

In the long run, Draft Day is a film you will enjoy. For guys on a date night, it’s definitely a good pay back for when your girlfriend made you see Sex in the City. It’s a good date night film, which you will truly enjoy. I gave Draft Day Jeebus Score of 4.2, Draft Day, A Good Time at the Theater.