The Expendables 3 has a very large list of stars which includes Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Terry Crews, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Dolph Lundgren all returning for the third film. There are also many new cast members which include Harrison Ford, Mel Gibson, Wesley Snipes, Kelsey Grammer, Kellan Lutz,Victor Ortiz, Antonio Banderas and Ronda Rousey. Now that is a lot of stars to fit into a film and a lot of character to!
The Expendables 3 follows Barney Ross (Sylvester Stallone) who has a team of ageing expendables and is facing mixed emotions with taking on new missions with them as many have been lost in recent times and he doesn’t want to lose more of his friends. Barney Ross is given one last mission by the CIA agent known as “Drummer” played by Harrison Ford who asks Barney to take down arms dealer Conrad Stonebanks who is played by Mel Gibson. With a smaller team of Expendables which now only includes Lee Christmas (Jason Statham), Caesar (Terry Crews) and Gunner ( Dolph Lundgren), Barney (Sylvester Stallone) must now find new recruits for his team. This leads to people like Smilee (Kellan Lutz), Luna (Rhonda Rhusey), Mars (Victor Ortiz) and Galgo (Antonio Bandaras) joining the team of Expendables.
The plot of The Expendables 3 is very easy to follow and I didn’t get lost at any point. It’s basically just that the Expendables need to take down the arms dealer Stonebanks. The Expendables 3 does manage to fit in some depth with its characters and also kept linking back to previous films in the series which was good. Past expendables have their tags hung up in the plane as a way to remember them and characters have a constant reminder that each mission could be their last. There is also some good work put into the background of the Stonebanks villain but I don’t really want to spoil it so I won’t mention what that is for the review. Overall the plot is solid but not every character gets the air time they need.
Characters I think have always been a bit of a problem for the series in general as there are just way to many! While we do get some background for some characters and new character Galgo (Antonio Bandaras) gets a lot of screen time others don’t get much at all. I’m not sure why Kellan Lutz was in this film but he didn’t do anything spectacular and actually a lot of the younger stars (Kellan Lutz, Rhonda Rhusey and Victor Ortiz) do nothing at all to make an impact. They are just completely overshadowed by the more famous stars and are really just wasted. Famous people are wasted as well though, for example Jet Li is in the movie for only about 1-2 minutes and if you didn’t know who he was you wouldn’t even have known he was in there.
For the most part though in The Expendables 3 we do get some good acting and a lot of entertaining scenes from the main cast. Sylvester Stallone did some good work here for this film and many of his scenes were much better than what everyone else was able to do. There are quite a few funny moments in the film and the entrance scene for Mel Gibson’s character Stonebanks was great to watch. Out of all the casting I thought that Mel Gibson was probably the perfect choice to play the villain as he was great in the role.
People don’t really go to see the Expendables series for the story and character development though, they go for the action. Actually with the story and characters I thought it was good enough and was better than I was expecting so I was satisfied with it. The action is very well edited and put together and Patrick Hughes did a good job with directing the movie. Right from the first minute of The Expendables 3 you get the action you paid for. If there is anything The Expendables 3 delivers perfectly on, it’s the action. You get train scenes, plane scenes, tank scenes, fight scenes, shootout scenes, combat scenes, climbing scenes, sniping scenes, car scenes, motorcycle scenes and helicopter scenes and one scene where we watch Stonebanks purchase some art. What i’m saying the whole movie is just pure action and if you are going in there for that, you’ll definitely get what you wanted. In some parts it does get a bit silly though, the motorcycle scenes with Kellan Lutz dodging tank fire weren’t the best but luckily only about a minute of airtime. But overall as an action packed film The Expendables 3 has you covered and probably has the most action scenes in a movie I’ve seen this year.
Overall The Expendables 3 is an entertaining film. You get more actors than you may need but that’s what makes the film so fun. Sylvester Stallone as Barney is a good main character to follow and Mel Gibson as the arms dealing villain Stonebanks was a great casting choice. If you’re going in for the action alone and are happy for some light entertainment, some funny lines and to see a lot of things get blown up, shot at and punched then this is the film for you. I also think that for fans of these action films and looking at what the film promises in the trailers and at the previous ones in the series, The Expendables 3 delivers on what it promises, which was a large quantity of stars and action scenes.