Damien on… “The Expendables 3”
The latest episode in this saga has had its critics; the old trick of making an actioner fit the PG13 mould – and concentrating on young actors (everyone wants to watch the sexagenarian guys still kicking ass and taking names) – plus its containing less humour than the previous two outings – did not endear it to critics or audience.
Which is not to say it was a turkey. It still passes a couple of hours entertainingly, if you are not too demanding. But while it still scraped a profit (where the first two cleared a fifty percent boost) it suffered a BIG drop in the domestic gross. Why?
Well, the bit that dented it for THIS critic was where – around 56 minutes in – a “drone” is produced, which has four large wheels (clearly driven from the bottom) which are used to trundle it a relatively short distance – then it simply “levitates” without ANY visible means of vertical propulsion.
One can imagine that perhaps the original drawings had the wheels pivoting horizontally, then – the spokes shaped as propellers – up she goes. But somewhere along the line, this notion got LOST.
The director simply hiked up the model, using a fishing rod, figuring it would be sorted in post.
But aside from painting out the supporting wires – it WASN’T.
This is just not GOOD enough. Granted the stunts in these kinds of actioners stretch credibility to the max – but at least they do not employ MAGIC. Save that for Harry Potter. An Expendables fan does NOT expect to be treated like a KID.
Even if the wheels HAD doubled as propellers, it would have been hard to accept – given the machinery required for the transformation would have made the whole too heavy to get airborne.
In any case, given the distance it covered on the ground was not far, launching a conventional drone into the air from the starting point would have been a far simpler option.
This was just SLOPPY FILM-MAKING.
There is already talk of an Expendables 4; but if the franchise is not to go down the DUMPER – howlers like this one must NOT be allowed to damage its word-of-mouth.