Why You Shouldn't See the G.I.Joe Movie
Tuesday, August 04, 2009 | Author: Mad Typist

Don't be this guy. This guy is someone who, in the future, went and saw the G.I. Joe movie on opening weekend. He obviously regrets his decision. You've probably been this guy before, contributing to the opening weekend box office receipts of terrible films like Transformers 2 and X-men Origins: Wolverine.

I had a good friend email me and say, "Admit it. You're just a little excited to see the new G.I. Joe movie, aren't you?" The answer is, "No. No I am not. In fact, the only excitement I feel can best be categorized as 'frothing-at-the-mouth rage'."

Before I launch into my tirade, let me get this out up front:
I have not seen the G.I. Joe movie, and therefore it's possible I'll be wrong and the movie will be great.

Let me tell you why that doesn't matter:
If I'm wrong, you lose nothing but the chance to see it opening weekend. It will still be in theaters next week. If I'm right, however, you'll save some hard earned cash and the two hours you would have wasted on what I suspect will be awful.

Anyway, I've been dreading this release for some time now. Let the record show I warned you people over a year ago about my concerns. But, now that more details have come out, I've been able to refine my argument a bit. Here you go:

Reasons why this movie is going to suck:

It has a Wayans brother in it. Now, in hands of a capable director such as Darren Aronofsky, Marlon Wayans is capable of turning in a nuanced and lovely performance like he did in Requiem for a Dream. In the hands of a bad director, Marlon Wayans is capable of turning in such stunning work as White Chicks, Little Man, and my personal favorite Dungeons and Dragons. It takes a lot of skill to be the worst actor in a movie like D&D, but Mr. Wayans pulled it off.

2. Speaking of directors, the guy who helmed this also directed Van Helsing and the first two entries in The Mummy series. All three of those movies were some level of terrible, and all three suffered from really awful special effects. Since "awesome special effects" and "popcorn movie" keep getting thrown around when talking about this movie, you should be very worried about Stephen Sommers's track record.

3. Don't be fooled by the 91% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Those numbers are skewed, as almost none of the top critics will get a chance to weigh in before the film opens. When a studio refuses to screen a movie in advance, that is a VERY BAD SIGN. Film.com has a good article on the types of films traditionally not screened for critics.

4. Another bad sign: the movie is being released in August. Traditionally, releasing an big action film in August is a sign that the studio doesn't have faith that the movie is very good. Everything I read from the studio execs smacks of bull.
"`G.I. Joe' is a big, fun, summer event movie — one that we've seen audiences enjoy everywhere from Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland to Phoenix, Ariz.," said Rob Moore, vice chairman of Paramount Pictures.
Yeah. That quote (from this article) = "So screw you, East and West Coast. The heartland loves this crap."

5. Why is Sienna Miller famous? Can anyone explain that to me? She's pretty, yeah, but in a very generic kind of way. She's not a great actress. Her claim to fame seems to be more about who she's fucking and stealing away from their wife at the moment.

6. Remember that great theme song "A Real American Hero"? Well, forget that, because for some reason G.I. Joe is now an international squad. In fact, even though they've stolen the name from the comic and animated series, this movie seems to bear little resemblance to the original works.

7. Duke used to be an awesome second-in-command. For some reason Duke is no longer a seasoned First Sergeant, but a punk ass young guy played by Channing Tatum (a.k.a. the douche from Step Up and Step Up 2: The Streets). Yes, because what Duke needed was a more "hip" edge. Barf.

8. If reports are true that The Baroness is no longer Eastern European but now Canadian, then... WTF? What is she the Baroness of, exactly? Was the change made because Sienna Miller couldn't do the accent the right way?

9. Accelerator suits? Why?!

10. I have to believe that, on some level, even Hasbro knows this isn't the right way to tell a G.I. Joe story. I mean, yeah, they're going to take the money from toy sales, etc. But... there's a reason they went out and hired Warren Ellis to write an animated G.I. Joe movie. Because it was fucking awesome and it was everything that a G.I. Joe story should be - exciting, fast-paced, respectful to the original comic/series while still making a story that would resonate with contemporary audiences. And there was no reason that the story Ellis wrote couldn't have been made into a live action film if they really wanted.

In any case, like I said, if the movie releases and the critics rave over it, I'll gladly go see it. I'll be the first to say "my bad" if it turns out to be awesome, and then I'll post a full and glowing review. But the smart bet this weekend is to skip this (sample dialogue from this movie clip: “Emotions are not based in science, and if you can’t quantify or prove something exists…well, in my mind it doesn’t.”).

Here's a quick list of things you can do instead:
  1. If you want to see a movie involving the military, see the amazing Hurt Locker instead.
  2. If you want a fun popcorn movie, go see Star Trek again, catch Drag Me To Hell, or go rent Taken at the video store.
  3. If you only have money for one movie this month, save your cash and see what I suspect will be the true action sleeper of the summer, District 9.
  4. If you want a movie your kid will enjoy, rent Coraline or The Incredible Hulk instead.
Remember kids, knowing is half the battle.
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On 7:05 PM , Brownie said...

All good points but I'm in a pickle... I have a 7 year old, who like any 7 year old just doesn't have the able to discriminate between good and bad movies, that is begging me to go. So do I say "no" and offer lame excuse/reason or do I just bite the bullet and take him to this craptacular flick just like my father use to do?

On 10:30 AM , Mad Typist said...

Sometimes being a parent means sucking it up and going to see things like this movie, or a Jonas Brothers concert, or whatever the kids want to do.

I'd say the best idea is to wait a week or so. It'll be less crowded, and you won't be guilty of contributing to the opening weekend box office that this film probably won't deserve.

On 9:12 AM , Jeremy Klaver said...

Some valid points, lady friend. I'm catching it when it's out of the theatre and doesn't cost me so much.