Wednesday, February 15, 2012

G.I. Joe 2 Sets to Redeem it's Predecessor

Though G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra did well enough to warrant a sequel, the film itself has been panned by critics and fans alike. Unlike its sister Hasbro franchise The Transformers, G.I. Joe has yet to find a niche for itself as a multimedia juggernaut. The strong sci-fi elements of Transformers, plus the transforming gimmick in itself, lend a lot more flexibility to the Robots in Disguise brand taking a gamble at successfully reinventing itself.

One of the factors that made G.I. Joe successful in the past was the fact that it could happen - despite some of those hokey terrorist plots. The first live action Joe movie strayed away from that, and didn't take itself seriously enough. Sure, you need some wiggle room - not wanting to take yourself too seriously - but the plot reeked of 80s cartoon was dated and contrived. For longtime fans, attempting to inject character conflict by making Cobra Commander the Baroness's brother, and Duke the Baroness's fiance was painful, forced and a major slap in the face. The corrosive nanobite tech, and the underwater sea base pushed limits as well.

Though I enjoyed the first Joe movie, I see its flaws, and welcome a more serious and faithful take on the Real American Hero. The sequel's director promises to give us the fans what we want, along with bringing non-fans in with action stars like Bruce Willis and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson - it's a smart combo. We've already gotten glimpses of Cobra Commander, and a slightly redesigned Snake Eyes. And with characters like Lady Jaye, Flint, Roadblock, Stormshadow and Firefly, this film looks like it's on the right track. A sneak glimpse of Destro - perhaps leading into a third film also has my interest peaked.

Either way, I will be returning to the box office, and buying this film on DVD as well. I predict G.I. Joe: Retaliation will put this franchise back on track, and open up the brand for a much-deserved expansion.

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