Everyone knows an Expendables film is going to be about action, action, action, equating to thousands of shots fired, eye popping explosions, (then no one looking at them) bad guys annihilated, cheesey one liners, ridiculous kills and seemingly bullet proof heroes.
Before we begin it is worth noting the age ratings of the films. The original Expendables film was a rating of 18, Expendables 2 was 15 and this outing is 12A. For me the over the top gore is what paid homage to old 80’s action. Bringing the age ratings down on a film like Expendables is poor move in my opinion, I was upset at Expendables 2 being a 15. Expendables 3 being a 12A didn’t sit well with me.
The usual suspects in the cast appear, with Stallone leading the crew as Barney Ross. Jason Statham as Lee Christmas, Dolph Lungren as Gunner Jensen with Randy Couture and Terry Crews making an appearance as Toll Road and Caesar.
In the opening scene, the scenario plays out as a hostage rescue mission seemingly impossible but our team of heroes finds a way around. With some nifty helicopter piloting and cool shooting from the team they release the prisoner Wesley Snipes. Snipes having previously played Blade and notable for action roles makes a welcome return in Expendables 3. In the first scene he escapes, goes completely off the rails and virtually on his own wipes out the enemy aboard the prison train. He is introduced as Doc, one of the original five Expendables, and he is pretty proficient with a blade.
Doc becomes the fifth member for the next mission which goes bad. When one of the team is seriously wounded, Barney Ross regains a conscious about his veteran team. In a quite confusing manner retires his team so they can survive and live a normal life, much to their dismay.
Barney Ross with the assistance of Bonaparte (Kelsey Grammer) puts together a brand new team. The young blood are more tech savvy and execute formulaic plans with clean efficiency. The snatch and grab mission is a success and seems almost too easy. Mel Gibson plays the Conrad Stonebanks and Gibson does well playing the villain, cold calculating and ruthless, always with a plan.
The young blood is captured and Barney Ross survives by the skin of his teeth. Leaving the mission to once again call upon his original expendables and tackle his enemy, the other expendable founding father turned ruthless arms dealer Stonebanks.
All in all the action is over the top but the gore has been toned down. The young bloods, Thorn, Mars, Luna and Smilee fit right in although I was cautious at first. New faces Drummer (Harrison Ford) and Galgo (Antonio Banderas) add some much needed humour and awesome action in their own right.
Essentially if you love the previous two see this but I’m hoping Stallone puts the gore back into the Expendables as I felt their was something missing while I was watching. Roll on Expendables 4, preferably with an 18 rating.