So I went to a DIY double feature of “The Expendables” and “The Other Guys” last night with my girlfriend Stephanie.
DIY Double Feature you say? What’s that?
Well it’s when you create your own two-movie experience just by planning ahead a bit. Look for two movies you want to see, one theater they’re both playing at, how long each film lasts and when you can see them back to back. So we did 7:40 The Expendables (1:48 run time) and 9:50 The Other Guys (1:40 run time, not that it matters if it’s the second screening!).
EXPENDABLES, which is directed, written and produced and starring Sylvester Stallone went about as predicted. A bunch of washed up action superstars dressed to the nine in bulletproof vests and mercenary gear taking on one small army at a time.
Alongside Stallone, we’ve got Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, (Stone Cold) Steve Austin and Mickey Rourke.
Okay so maybe Statham, Li and Rourke aren’t washed up, but…
Luckily they’re not ALL on the same team. Just most of them. The other good news? The previews only give away pieces from the opening scene.
The bad news? There’s not much else worth giving away.
Most everyone with Internet access already knew good ol’ Arnie Schwarzenegger (is it sad that his last name is in the spellcheck dictionary?) made a cameo, which was utterrly pointless, much like this movie played out. Does the Governator want the mercenary job from undercover CIA operative Bruce Willis (aka Mr. Church)? Nah, he’ll give it to his old pal Stallone. Arnold’s holding out for president of the United States anyhow.
The rest is just a playful mess of buff dudes with big guns overthrowing an entire island’s military and government for a girl Stallone never even kisses. And we don’t even know if they did it for money! Go in with low expectations and you might be pleased…
But instead, go see THE OTHER GUYS. The laughs really begin after the first 15 minutes, where (spoiler alert!) the gung-ho celebrity cops played by Sam Jackson (yus!) and Dwane Johnson (the artist formerly known as Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) accidentally kill themselves, leaving a void in the NYPD that Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg are ready to fill. Or rather, ready to argue about whether or not they can, want or need to fill it. [more after the break]
The bad cop/bad cop, buddy/not-buddies partnership between Ferrell and Wahlberg on the force keeps the movie afloat. The two play to their strengths and it works.
Wahlberg’s stereotypical angry, aggressive cop persona versus Ferrel’s stupid, clueless, I’m Will Ferrell character never ceases and the laughs keep coming.
A bit gimmicky and a lot silly, The Other Guys makes it work. The story is more compelling than The Expendables lack thereof, perhaps because Sylvester Stallone didn’t write and direct The Other Guys. (No offense Sly, but it was a bit dry!)
Says it all in the clip below!