Big guns and loud explosions feature strongly in this live action flick, but that’s the only bang you’ll be getting for your buck here. Based on the hugely popular toy figure G.I. JOE which was the male equivalent of the Barbie doll way back in the 1970s, G.I. JOE: The Rise of the Cobra seeks to establish the origins of the evil Cobra organization, but it’s essentially catered for gadget-crazy males to “ooh” and “ahh” over the fancy pulse-rays, sleek war machinery and aircrafts- nothing more, nothing less.
Duke (Channing Tatum), the lead soldier in the G.I. JOE team, is charged with the mission of transporting four nuclear warheads to a military base. On the way, however, the precious cargo is intercepted by the Baroness (Sienna Miller) a.k.a. Anna, an ex-flame of Duke’s, as part of Cobra’s terrible plot to destroy the world. As the G.I. JOEs race against time to defuse the threat, the movie soon becomes a big blur of explosions, flying cars and blown-off human body parts.
While the good-looking cast makes for abundant eye-candy, it’s not nearly enough to redeem the movie of its cringingly lousy special effects, a flaw magnified in the wake of visually-pleasing blockbusters such as Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and even the latest Harry Potter installment. In fact, it felt more like a make-for-TV effort. A pity though as the action sequences in themselves are quite entertaining. Not only that, the many side plots renders the whole outing a head-scratching experience, and it does not help that the corny script holds as much water as a leaking toy gun.
No self-respecting toy figurine would ever have allowed such an inferior reincarnation of itself to go onto the big screen, much less one that gave rise to the term ‘action figure’.