Posts Tagged ‘Mickey Rourke’

Flashes of inspiration can’t brighten ‘Conan’

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011
Jason Momoa and Rachel Nichols in "Conan the Barbarian" Conan the Cimmerian (Jason Momoa) defends a “pure blood” woman (Rachel Nichols) from assault in Marcus Nispel’s 3-D remake of John Milius’ “Conan the Barbarian.”

In the early days of the ancient Hyborian Age, everyone apparently had access to excellent dental care, because the poor peasants in Marcus Nispel’s remake of “Conan the Barbarian” possess perfect sets of choppers.

However, the unfortunate warriors under the command of the warlord Khalar Zym obviously went with a cheaper health plan, because their teeth look terrible.

I only bring this up because teeth are supposed to be one of those things you don’t pay much attention to while watching an R-rated, action-packed tale of violence and vengeance.

But after about 40 minutes of numbing nonstop 3-D slashing and bashing, lopping and chopping, slicing and dicing, torment and torture, my mind began wandering.

I started to notice the anachronistic perfect smiles, the cheap-looking, digitally created blood spurts, the unreal, computer-generated landscapes, and Rachel Nichols’ ridiculously flat, mechanical line readings as a female warrior named Tamara.

These issues could be overlooked in a sword-and-sorcery movie if it sweeps us along with a riveting story and has well-wrought characters we can invest our emotions in.

“Conan the Barbarian” is not that movie. (Read more…)

Stallone turns ‘Expendables’ into brain-dead bloodbath

Friday, August 13th, 2010
Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren and Sylvester Stallone in "The Expendables" Barney Ross (director Sylvester Stallone), right, gets the drop on Gunner Jensen (Dolph Lundgren), who has the drop on Ying Yang (Jet Li) in the action thriller “The Expendables.”

What’s up with Sylvester Stallone’s face?

The star, co-writer and director of “The Expendables” looks as if he’s had his head reconstructed with Silly Putty, and his eyebrows have been embroidered on to his skull by an inebriated seamstress.

Maybe it’s just the soldier-for-hire he plays. If he runs out of bullets, he can always scare his enemies away.

But I digress.

“The Expendables” will go down in Hollywood history as the greatest waste of testosterone ever splattered on the silver screen.

This ridiculous, brain-dead and viciously violent mercenary action film assembles the largest group of major tough guys ever to escape from the 1980s with their AARP cards intact: Stallone, Dolph Lundgren, Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Eric Roberts and Mickey Rourke.

Hey! What happened to Chuck Norris, Steven Seagal and Jean-Claude Van Damme? Too busy to stop by for a roundhouse kick or two?

Before “Terminator” and “Die Hard” fans start drooling, it should be noted that the Governator and Willis appear in “The Expendables” for about as long as you see them in the coming attraction trailers.

After trading quips, Schwarzenegger and Willis wisely disappear for the rest of the movie before it deteriorates from nostalgic cuteness into chaotic schlock. (Read more…)

Downey keeps action-packed ‘Iron Man 2’ light and fun

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010
Robert Downey Jr. in "Iron Man 2" Robert Downey Jr. reprises his role as wealthy industrialist Tony Stark in the anticipated action sequel “Iron Man 2.”

“Iron Man 2” takes off with a sputter, flies aimlessly around for a while, then finally kicks the blasters into overdrive during the last act to deliver a comic book adventure worthy of its well-made 2008 original.

Jon Favreau’s sequel neither eclipses nor equals his fresh, clever Marvel superhero origin tale, but it still packs loads of entertaining fun sprinkled with witty dialogue, spectacular effects and physical stunts so amazing they boggle the eyes – especially when executed by Scarlett Johansson swaddled in a skintight ninja suit.

Robert Downey Jr.’s irreverent, Peter Pan-like portrayal of billionaire industrialist Tony Stark (aka Iron Man) continues to be the movie’s strongest asset, although Favreau’s light and nimble direction keeps the story’s piled-on complications from sinking under their own globby weight.

Stark continues to have heart problems, and not only because E.T.’s glowing ticker in his chest is slowly dying, He also possesses unresolved feelings for Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow, back with more red hair) roiling beneath his armored facade.

In addition, poor Tony suffers from estranged daddy issues with his dead father, Howard Stark (John Slattery, looking as if he just stepped off the set of “Mad Men”).

Then there’s the strained friendship between Stark and Lt. Col. James “Rhodey” Rhodes (Don Cheadle, an improvement over original actor Terrence Howard). Stark doesn’t appreciate how his increasingly flaky behavior jeopardizes Rhodes’ career. (Read more…)