Two years after The Expendables, which I expected a lot from but which disappointed me, comes the second installment in which the who’s who of eighties action movies flex their muscles, spit out their one liners and look though as much as possible. So is this second installment better than the first one?
Now I usually describe the story here, but really there is not a much of it. All you need to know is that the team is sent out on a mission and it involves a lot of fighting and shooting. The team has a new member in the form of Billy (Liam Hemsworth). He’s an expert sniper and as an actor I thought Hemsworth really added something to the movie, because let’s be honest, all those action stars are not well-known for being able to act.
With so many actors in the movie it’s hard to give each and every one enough time in the spotlight. Which in the Expendables means that Jet Li almost is not present except for one big fight scene in the beginning after which he disappears. Statham and Stallone get most screentime and Lundgren’s character is shown more and also is quite funny. These actors are not comedians, so the timing sometimes is way off, but they will manage to put a smile on your face. In the first one Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger made a small cameo. In this sequel their roles have expanded slightly. Don’t expect them to feature the whole movie, but once they do appear they manage to put a big smile on your face by the taglines they say. Jean-Claude van Damme has fun in being the bad guy and is a joy to watch.
This second installment in the series felt better directed and as I was watching this I cared a lot more about what was going on. It’s still not a cinematic masterpiece, but these type of movies don’t need to be. This is a movie filled with big action stars, guns, fights, explosions and tough talk and sometimes that is all you need.