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GI Joe: Rise of the EPIC FAIL


G.I. Joe

Soapbox: There is no reason to make exceptions for this movie. Sure it was/is a toy line. Sure it was a cartoon from the 80s. It does have a $175 million budget and [[chuckle]] Hollywood talent involved, or at least it should. This movie will be reviewed as a movie for movie fans (not for fanboys). No exceptions.

First let’s see how I scored in my predictions shall we?

[Original top 10]

1. Stephen Sommers
2. Remember Helsing, it'll be that bad.
3. Remember how great the trailer for Mummy was and how not so the movie was. This'll likely be the same case.
4. Marlon Wayans... riiiight.
5. Delta 6 accelerator suits. Even though they were such a huge part of the cartoon. What? They were never in the cartoon!?!
6. You know that just watching Sienna Miller isn't worth $9.50 and 2 wasted hours of life.
7. Arnold Vosloo isn't punk rock enough to be Zartan.
8. Destro's design.
9. Cobra Commander's design.
10. Stephen Sommers.


1. Correct!
2. This was worse – and I can’t believe I’m saying this.
3. Only the trailer wasn’t even great.
4. Correct!
5. Correct! Sure they aren’t in there long, but even that is too much.
6. Mega-Correct!
7. Nor was this pathetic inclusion into the film any good.
8. What design? There was none.
9. Sigh. Correct!
10. There should be an international law passed banning this sorry ass from ever being around a film project again.

You know when a movie starts off with a soapbox and a confirmation of my theories on how it will suck, you are in for an interesting review.

First I have to point out that I have seen some crap. I mean some really bad movies, but I don’t think I have ever seen a movie where the ENTIRE cast supplies such exceedingly poor performances. There is no exaggeration when I say every one. I mean every last person (maybe Snake-Eyes doesn’t count because there isn’t much there for him to do but jump around) does a bad job.

Sad to say, but Wayan’s is also the highest-ranking performance of the bunch. Of course, this is in no way intended as a compliment as shit on shit is still shit. <-Frank, but true.

Marlon Wayans has proven that his performance in Requiem For A Dream was a fluke. Sure this movie is light on substance, but so too is he light on talent. I will forever be scarred by the memory that was his (and his brother’s) attempt at hosting the MTV award show. That epic failure is descriptive of his attempt at humor and acting. He should be placed in the same international law mentioned above.

Christopher Eccleston, who plays Destro is a good actor. He was good actor in the cheesy Dr. Who and he did a good job in 28 Days Later. However, in this movie you can’t expect much. What do we get? Absolute garbage. His accent seems utterly forced. Eccleston isn’t even Destro until the very last few scenes and the FX look horrible. He, along with everyone else in this film, proves that Sommers is not a good director, which is something that the man can already do for himself.

Speaking of Sommers, this man has to be the worst thing to come out of Hollywood in quite some time. Did he direct Spice World under a fake name? I would totally believe it if I was told this was true.

How, I assume, this movie came about: Sommers watched Star Wars and thought, “I can do better than that.” Then he watched Transformers and thought, “I can really do better than that.” Then he was offered G.I. Joe by some foolish producers and thought, “this is where all my wet dreams of being a Michael Bay will come true.” What we get from then on the largest piece of fluff ever. OMZ, the man even screws up Snake Eyes! There was a scene where Snake-Eyes and Storm Shadow fought in a tube and I could swear it is him trying to prove that he could beat out Return of the Jedi. I was waiting for Storm Shadow to slice off Snake-Eyes’ hand and tell him he’s his Big Papa. Are you kidding!?! Not at all.

Another scene where you can tell he was trying to top Bay would be that ridiculous Detla suit scene in the middle of the street in France. So, what is it trying to best? Think Transformers in Vegas. You know, if you are going to try to top a scene from another movie don't break the story (with the addition of the Delta suits) just so you can do it.

Cobra Commander barely deserves mention. He's not in it and what we get is weak, but I do love how Rex, the man he was before he became Cobra Commander, can become completely fascinated with a technology he has seen in 5 seconds. What kind of half assed scientist gets fascinated with something by just seeing some fancy graphics? Then the bad connection with some of the other characters here. Why can't bad guys just be people the heros don't know anymore? There always has to be a lame/forced connection.

Sienna Miller. I knew you wouldn’t come through with what that leather bound ass promised. All you had to do was stand there. Not say a damn thing and looked like you enjoyed shooting people. Doesn’t sound that hard, but between your utterly poor performance and the sad fundamental change to the Baroness character you get an EPIC, leather-bound, FAIL. For reference all you had to do was mimic Famke Janssen’s performance in GoldenEye and you would have been fine.

Wrapping up on actors: What was with Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje being dressed like Blade? And is your career this bad, Jonathan Pryce? Do I need to open a support Pryce fund via Pay Pal?

I love the fact that every chic in this movie had to have a busty rack. Stephen Summers must have been really… firm… about this when they were casting. I hear he fired two casting directors because of offering up actresses with “unacceptable” bra sizes.

The action here is so CG heavy that they should have just stuck to doing this project the right way and making it completely CG with the original designs. If you are going to make a bad film – make a bad film that is faithful to the original series.

Ah, the original series - I’m avoiding comparisons because the two are oceans apart. This movie is a failure as a film, a mindless summer action film (it’s that bad), and an adaption. There is no justifying this movie. Period.

Just, so no one says it wasn’t covered, the script is crap – just as bad as everything else in this film. It’s filled with a few unintentionally funny aspects, which are funny because they are oh so sad. Also, these writers need to get out more. Just because you are Scottish doesn’t mean you speak Celtic. Hell, the only person that still speaks Celtic is Enya!

Now the good part… I bashed Sommers above, but I have to backtrack a bit. I know – where is the consistency? Well, I have to give this to Sommers. When the man “directs” he does so with such power that he can change the laws of physics, as we know them! Yes, the man can make water thinner than air when fighting in it and the best part…

Sommers can make Ice sink! The Cobra’s kept screaming that they were going to blow the Ice Cap (whatever the mindless wording was) and I couldn’t see how that was a threat, until it sank – straight down to the bottom of the ocean, not stopping at go and not collecting $200. Bravo, Sommers! I bet you hang out with Stephen Hawkins just to prove him wrong by altering all we know as facts!

On a sad note, I think the only person that actually tried to give a good performance here (though he failed, too) was Saïd Taghmaoui. You can tell he was really trying in this, which makes him the only one. I would give this guy more work solely because if he put so much effort into this film imagine what he would put himself through for a good film with an actual director (Sommers is no director).

I admit that writing this review was a lot like beating a dead horse. I didn’t know where to begin. I wanted it to be good because it would appease my childhood self and it would have been interesting to write since I had written our “Why you shouldn’t see G.I. Joe” article.

The best part of this movie… That it can, and likely will, be forgotten.


Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Christopher Eccleston, GI joe, Jonathan Pryce, marlon wayan, review, Saïd Taghmaoui, stephen sommers, bitter balcony Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Christopher Eccleston, GI joe, Jonathan Pryce, marlon wayan, review, Saïd Taghmaoui, stephen sommers, bitter balcony Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Christopher Eccleston, GI joe, Jonathan Pryce, marlon wayan, review, Saïd Taghmaoui, stephen sommers, bitter balcony Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Christopher Eccleston, GI joe, Jonathan Pryce, marlon wayan, review, Saïd Taghmaoui, stephen sommers, bitter balcony


Official website:

G.I. Joe


Directed by: Stephen Sommers
Written by: Stuart Beattie, David Elliot, Paul Lovett
Cast: Rachel Nichols, Christopher Eccleston, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Ray Park, Jonathan Pryce, Saïd Taghmaoui, Dennis Quaid, Sienna Miller, Byung-hun Lee, Marlon Wayans, Channing Tatum

Source of the Bitter: JAS

Comments, rants and other stuffs below
xcacalito on Mon, 08/10/2009 - 9:36am

But I am going to anywho.....I TOLD YOU SO.. as I said REMAKE.. they will they got there money and run... they will make another one. Either a shitty sequel or shitty sequel. Bye

J (not verified) on Sun, 08/09/2009 - 5:55pm

Harsh, but fair.

Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 08/08/2009 - 12:19pm

Man I hate internet bitter people, you sit up here and write a review putting down someone else's work and creativity, what have you done? What movie's have you filmed? What movie's have you acted in? None!!! So if you are so much smarter than everyone why dont you make a film than, or did you just decided to make 25,000 a year and make reviews on your little website!!!! Get a life and drop your bitterness act, cause your not stopping nothing, this movie will make a lot of money and there will be a sequel and you will still be a loser ha ha ha ha ha ha.

SamFisher on Mon, 08/10/2009 - 7:36pm

Did I read this right? Is this guy really defending this movie. Thank god for him being anonymous.

John Rojas on Sun, 08/09/2009 - 11:48pm

25,000 Dollars!!! We wish we made 25,000 writing reviews for crap films. Bitter Balcony is a free forum that Jas and I created to call out the popular mediocrity you defend so passionately in your anonymity. You know that great filmmakers like François Truffaut, Eric Rohmer, and Jean-Luc Godard were passionate film critics as well? And did you know they were influenced by Hollywood movies and reinvented the archetypes of mainstream films to create the French New Wave? We might be cruel in our opinions, but in our heart of hearts we want nothing more than to be kind.

We love movies, especially American Blockbusters, and as for me, a film of grandeur able to connect with the masses is the best art in the world. Yes, I hope that someday I get to do a feature, and I'm more than willing to have to torn to bits by nameless bloggers like you if that's what it deserves. But I won't insult my intelligence or yours in my efforts, but by your comments I don't know if you can tell the difference.

JAS on Mon, 08/10/2009 - 6:59am

My only argument with this is that I don't believe we are cruel. I prefer to call it honest with a bit of sarcasm.

JAS on Sat, 08/08/2009 - 12:38pm

Such constructive comments written so eloquently.

JAS on Sat, 08/08/2009 - 11:06am

I hope that people hold Harry Knowles in slightly less regard now. The fact that he allowed his name and a positive comment to be attached to this film is embarrassing.

Also note that there are futher plot issues written by John Rojas HERE.

I had to stop myself. I think I could have easily continued twice the length of this slaughter-fest called a review. I may not have much in the way of specifics here, but when the whole is so bad, why bother.

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