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the island of conclusions

Male Pattern Badness

the island of conclusions

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Male Pattern Badness

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Yes, I am quoting from The Expendables 2, because, in the annals of bad parenting decisions, I took my son to see this blockbuster cinematic event (actually, in his book, this goes in the annals of awesome parental decisions, never mind the brain cells melted by senseless violence). Why yes, I was the only woman in the theater. The last time that happened to me, I was seeing Shame in the depths of Chelsea.

But, actually, the movie wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. And wouldn’t even as been as violent as it was if most of the guys in it hadn’t been too old to do much except plant their feet and fire machine guns (which makes for a lot of spattering blood, but not much suspense).

It was tonally bizarre, veering from hilarious (Chuck Norris shows up for pretty much the sole purpose of delivering a Chuck Norris joke) to brutal (Jean Claude Van Damme makes Albanian villagers dig for plutonium with their bare hands. He’s that mean) to unexpectedly affecting (no—I’m not going to spoil you for those parts).

There’s a moment when Stallone and the rest of the old guy team admire the sight of Liam Hemsworth sprinting up a forested hillside that’s simultaneously ridiculous, homoerotic, and genuinely poignant.

Still, those guys wouldn’t be movie stars if they couldn’t hold the screen, and they even pull off a lot of dialogue like this:

Schwartzenegger (who has run out of ammo): I’ll be back.
Willis: You’ve been back too much. I’ll be back. [Goes on the ammo run himself]
Schwartzenegger: Yippee ki yay.

The school year can’t start soon enough.
  • OMG, I cannot believe that last dialogue exchange. You deserve something very self-indulgent now.
    • IKR? Like a rewatch of Downton Abbey, or five Woody Allen movies.

      Though I have to commend all those guys on their unimpaired comic timing--they delivered such exchanges with panache.
  • Ah, my siblings and I are totally going to see that movie as soon as it is out in France. :) Although I fear the dialogue will lose something in translation.
    • You'll have a blast! (also, literally, there's a lot of blasting ;))

      I wouldn't worry about the dialogue--a good chunk of it is tag lines from the actors' other films. And the swagger doesn't need translation.
      • I look forward to some mindless action!

        They do change some things in the dubbing of movies (for various reasons) that will make echoing between movies difficult - for instance, the famous "yippee ki yay" line from the Die Hard movies was translated quite differently (can't remember how right now). Also, things just sound different from one language to another, so yes, the swagger will most definitely lose something! It's difficult to realize unless you're used to compare dubbed movies (or shows) to their original versions.

        I may have thought a lot about movie dubbing. :)
        • oh, yeah, of course! When I first read your comment I automatically though "subtitles"--but of course they'd dub a movie like that instead. And yeah, that would make things come out differently...

          Hopefully it'll still be okay, it's mostly a visual movie.
          • Yeah, with subtitles it would be different... But in France we have a lot of dubbing. There are more and more subtitled movies, but big movies like this one are difficult to find with subtitles unless you live in Paris, which I don't. It's probably because they're afraid it will keep people from go see them or something. :/
  • Hahah, this almost sounds like something I might enjoy watching if I were really hungover or jet lagged.

    I hope the days before school starts go quickly for you!
    • Yeah, it's surprisingly enjoyable. Though the blowing up of things might hurt your head if you had a hangover. But I always have a soft spot for Stallone, and the relationship b/w him and Liam Hemsworth is almost ficcable.

      Thank you! Son #1 starts the 23rd, Son#2 the 27th. Endless school supply runs and open houses to get through before that, but on the other side, some sanity, perhaps.
  • (no subject) -
    • You'll have a great time! I wouldn't have felt any shame if my kid were just a few years older. It was very well done, and there's something nice about seeing so many time ravaged faces. I have a big soft spot for Stallone in particular, and the relationship b/w him and Liam Hemsworth is almost ficcable.
  • Okay, that dialog excerpt makes me want to see it now...
    • See it! There're a lot of good lines, all delivered with aplomb. And Stallone wears more jewelry than Dean Winchester. There's a lot of senseless carnage, too, though, and blood spattering.
  • It's on our list, but given our schedules (we're already back in school)!we might have to wait for DVD.
    • Yeah, this was kind of our last summer movie--one starts on Thursday, the other next Monday. But it'll certainly wait for DVD. That might be more fun, anyway, since you could comment as often and as loudly as you like.

      Hope the school transition is going smoothly.
  • Lolwhat. I may have to watch this next time I'm sick and it's on Netflix instant watch, as it shall surely reach eventually. Although I'm not sure I'm sufficiently familiar with taglines.
    • Definitely worth catching sometime when you're in the right mood for carnage and taglines and OTT masculine charisma. I'm not sure you need to know all the references (I certainly didn't--Jason Statham means nothing to me)--it's all in the style of delivery :)
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