If you are looking forward to seeing Channing Tatum in the new movie G.I. Joe: Retaliation, don't get to the theater late or you'll miss him. His role in this film is even briefer than the one he had in Side Effects. And if you are looking forward to watching Bruce Willis do his thing, well don't blink or you will miss him too. Still you get a lot of action and a little acting from Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Adrianne Palicki and others.
The movie is all about the elitist G. I. Joes who are like Navy SEALs on steroids. Duke (Tatum) leads the team and his second in command is Roadblock (Johnson). At the start of the film the entire group is on a mission and is sold out by the President of the United States (Jonathan Pryce). The president is not really the president but is actually the dastardly Zartan (Arnold Vosloo).
The rest of the film is about the surviving G. I. Joes trying to prove the president is an imposter and also act to save the world from nuclear destruction. It is all fairly predictable but some of the action sequences are amazing. This is especially true of a sword fight battle on the side of a mountain. The people who are fighting are suspended by wires and swing back and forth attacking each other. It doesn't sound like much in words but seeing it is awesome.
The acting in the movie is pedestrian. Johnson is brawny and brave; Willis is smirky and cool; Palicki is beautiful and graceful; while the rest of the cast are cool and confidant. Walton Goggins, one of my favorite actors, has a brief appearance in the film but soon disappears. He is so good at what he does that you wonder why he took such a nothing role.
The film is rated PG-13 for profanity and violence.
This is a movie made for the fun of watching good guys battle the bad ones. It is escapism pure and simple. Maybe if Tatum had stuck around, or if Willis had had a more dominant role the film might have been better. As is, it is a movie to see for the special effects and the swordplay. Don't expect any more than that and you won't be disappointed.
I scored G. I. Joe: Retaliation a paid back 5 out of 10.