I wish this was a review about a movie I made up, but unfortunately G.I.Joe: Retaliation actually exists. True story: a couple of years ago, I was contracted by Hasbro through Kaiju Big Battel to act in a demo film by one of the G.I. Joe toy developers. Apparently, he wanted his latest action figure to appear in the sequel, and that’s how I learned there would be a follow-up to the horrible G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra. I doubt that the designer’s toy ever saw the light of day, and I hope nobody but his immediate boss saw the silly movie we made. Luckily I was wearing a ski mask the whole time, so nobody will recognize me if it ever shows up on Youtube. There are some “fat kid with a light sabre” moments in there that aren’t quite absurd enough to be entertaining. Luckily, it was an easy shoot, I got a free lunch, and was eventually paid $200 for my efforts. I’m quite sure The Rock, Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum and the rest of the cast of Retaliation were paid a lot more than that, which is why they should all be more embarrassed of their movie than I am of the work I did at Hasbro.
I’ll be honest, I have to give props to the writers of Retaliation for their unconventional plot. The film begins with the immediate slaughter of all the annoying Joes from the first movie. After 5 minutes of screen time, we’re only left with Roadblock (The Rock), Snake Eyes (Ray Parker Jr.), and Jinx (attractive, but not famous half-Asian girl). However, just when you are glad to see no more Wayans Brothers, something preposterous happens. The director decides that, after the success of Magic Mike, Channing Tatum is too popular to kill off. The movie is then sent back into production for another 10 months, and the entire story is re-written. The most notable change is that Duke’s uniform is now nothing more than a camouflage speedo. Where does Channing keep is sidearms and ammo? That is a question this film never answers, although you can probably figure it out if you saw Magic Mike. Anyway, after NOT dying, the crew eventually meets up with Bruce Willis and they all “retaliate” against the evil forces of Cobra. There is another pretty good fight between Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow, and Jinx does some things that are somewhat sexy and cool. The Rock says some witty one-liners, but a major disappointment is that he does NOT rhyme his dialogue. Anyone hoping to cling to just a tiny bit of nostalgia about the 80’s G.I.Joe cartoon should stay at home and not waste money on this. Overall the movie is as you’d expect: totally awful. A few good jokes by a washed-up wrestler, and some karate chops by the guy who wrote the Ghostbusters theme song is not enough to make up for all the other shit that happens.
One regret I have is that after my Hasbro stint, I could have warned you all that G.I. Joe: Retaliation was coming. I’m not sure why I didn’t. Maybe I was in denial, or maybe I just hoped the producers would come to their senses and it would get shit-canned. Really, it’s all YOUR fault. If you guys hadn’t all shown up in droves to see Magic Mike, maybe this movie would have suffered the pre-death it deserved.