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A-List: The Expendables 3

stallone - rocky v

The Rambo franchise had seemingly stalled out in 1988 with the disappointing Rambo III.  Desperate, Stallone turned back to the franchise that made him a star.  Rocky.  Rocky V was an attempt to bring the series back to its roots.  There were no talking robots this time.  No killer Russians.  Oh and Rocky was poor.  And brain damaged.  Realistic?  Probably.  But it was also a snooze and a downer.  Rocky V opened at number 2 behind Home Alone.  It got steamrolled and grossed an embarrassing $40 million dollars.

miller - Kindergarten_Cop

With both of his franchises seemingly out of gas, Stallone had nowhere to turn.  Meanwhile, his arch rival seemed unstoppable.  Schwarzenegger alternated between action movies and comedies.  In 1990, he had another comedic hit with Kindergarten Cop.  The next year, Schwarzenegger officially became the biggest movie star in the world with Terminator 2.

112211stop!

Stallone must have decided to take a page out of Arnold’s playbook.  Because he turned to comedy too.  But while Schwarzenegger was making crowd-pleasing high concept comedies with A-list director, Ivan Reitman, Stallone was making Oscar and Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot.

JudgeDredd19953_zpsd4080f09

Through the 90’s Stallone continued making movies.  He had enough mojo left from his Rocky/Rambo days that he could still throw his weight around.  Schwarzenegger became a star by working with talented directors like James Cameron and Paul Verhoven.  But when Stallone wasn’t writing and directing himself, he was throwing his weight around.  When Stallone signed on to make a movie, it became a Sylvester Stallone movie for good or ill.  By the end of the decade, Stallone’s movies were going straight to video.  The mighty had fallen.

stallone - spy kids 3

In the early 21st century, Stallone struggled to reinvent himself.  All the action heroes of the 80s had fallen on hard times.  Jason Borne and 9/11 had made them irrelevant.  Even Arnold Schwarzenegger was seen as a dinosaur of the 20th century.  Schwarzenegger retreated to the Terminator franchise for Terminator 3.  But after that, he fled to politics.  Meanwhile, Stallone was mugging his way through a bad guy role in Spy Kids 3-D.

Things were worse for lesser action heroes.  The Dolph Lundgrens, Steve Seagals and Jean-Claude Van Dammes had all been relegated to home video where old men could watch them and relive their glory days in the comfort of their living room.  An era had ended and these guys were just a reminder of days gone by.  In the modern world, their movies seemed small and trivial.  No one wanted Rambo any more.

Rocky Balboa

Or so it seemed.  In 2006, Stallone did what he always did when his career was in the trouble.  He went back to Rocky.  Rocky 6?  Was he kidding?!?  It was like a bad punchline.  No one would care.  But Stallone did something unexpected.  This time, he really did get back in touch with the heart of what made the first movie special.  Rocky and Stallone were underdogs again.  And even though Rocky Balboa only opened at #3 at the box office, audiences were cheering for him again.

pre-order-rambo-2008-starring-on-dvd-release-date-june-23

Even with good reviews and decent box office, Stallone couldn’t make Rocky 7.  So he revived his other long-dormant franchise, Rambo.  In 2008, Rambo (which is actually First Blood 4 if you are keeping count) opened at number 2 behind Meet the Spartans.  It wasn’t a home run.  But it was a base hit.

Two base hits in a row got Hollywood’s attention.  Stallone was making money.  Hollywood likes that.  But now that he had used up Rocky and Rambo, what could he possibly do for an encore.  His answer was inspired.

stallone - the expendables

Stallone’s name alone wasn’t enough to bankroll a new franchise.  But after his recent modest successes, Hollywood was taking Stallone’s calls again.  So he called up all of his friends.  The B and C-list action heroes whose fortunes had long since dried up.  And he made them an offer.  Play supporting roles in my movie and I can get us all back on the big screen.  For guys like Dolph Lundgren and Jet Li, it was an offer they could not refuse.

But other stars could and did turn Stallone down.  Steven Seagal and Jean-Claude Van Damme said “no”.  Big screen or no, these guys didn’t want to play second or third banana to a goateed Italian Stallion.  Besides, it was a Stallone movie.  What were it’s chances of success?

It’s easy to forget this.  But in 2010, The Expendables did not look like a hit.  It opened in August where franchise films go to die.  Studios frequently throw away movies they don’t believe in at the end of summer when the kids are going back to school.  The Expendables was just that.  Expendable.

But it turned out that a lot of Americans had grown nostalgic for the kind of action movie that Hollywood didn’t make any more.  The kind that starred guys like Stallone.  Those audiences turned up and made The Expendables a $100 million dollar hit.  Stallone was back, baby!

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Posted on August 17, 2014, in A-List, Movies and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 53 Comments.

  1. Just saw Expendables 3. I would have to say it was horribly disappointing, even going in there with low expectations. Terrible editing, and some of the worst CGI (Base jump scene?) and Green Screening I have seen (every car ride looks like it was pulled from a 70’s TV show). To make matters worse they trucked in a bunch of X-Listers as the “new-recruits”.

    Never was a more bland ensemble put together, this new group was completely unlikeable and their presence defeated the purpose of the film. I’d be hard pressed to identify any of them in a line-up.

    Mel Gibson and Banderas were the only highlights, lifting the acting levels out of the doldrums. Jet Li and Robert Davi were horribly wasted.

    When the Expendables first came out, I was excited, it was if they had been listening to my mate and I talking at the pub, lifting our ultimate movie idea (I swear we came up with it first!), but Stallone simply didn’t execute it properly. There needed to more one liners, more hand to hand combat and more silliness (if you have Randy Couture and Jet Li in a cast there should be no limit of H2H). As the series has progressed, what little they had of this has reduced even further.

    Sly, if you’re reading there are few films that require as much fan input as Expendables 4 does/will do, give me a call.

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    • Something else I didn’t mention in the article, this is the first Expendables movie to be rated PG-13. Obviously, the intent was to widen the potential audience for the franchise. But it also betrays the series’ reason for existing. It’s supposed to be a throwback to old school action. The effects should be old school. The violence should be old school. From the sound of things, Stallone has lost track of what made the first movie popular.

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    • This would be two movies in a row where they’ve underused Jet Li, as he really had only an extended cameo in Ex-2.

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      • To be honest, I have yet to watch an Expendables movie. I watched maybe a half hour of the first one and got interrupted. I was enjoying it well enough but I never went back to pick up where I left off. I wasn’t a big action guy in the 80s so I was never all that invested.

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      • I believe with Number 2 there was a scheduling conflict. No such excuse this time.

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  2. It’s hard to see Stallone, who just turned 68 last month, making yet another comeback highly unlikely–even less likely than The Expendables’ success. On the other hand, Schwarzenegger could probably milk his talent for tongue-in-cheek comedy to extend his career a little bit further.

    What I’m curious about is where Jason Statham’s career is going. He’s kind of the Stallone of the past decade–very good in hard-edged action roles, not a ton of range as an actor, etc. He’s got one pretty good bet for next year in Fast & Furious 7, but as he’s been set up as the villain, even if that surprisingly durable franchise goes to an 8th film, he probably won’t be in it.

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    • That’s a good point. I don’t really follow Statham. He’s maintained a good little career without ever getting anywhere near the A-list. I imagine he’ll continue along as he has been.

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    • I always Statham as this decade’s Schwarzenegger. Brit accent as opposed to Austrian one. But a certain sense of humor about things. I always saw Crank as one of my guilty pleasures.

      I saw the first Expendables. It had its moments. But it seemed to lack the pure fun a film of that type should deliver. Commando was totally implausible. But it was enjoyable as hell. I tend to compare the Expendables to Robert Rodriguez’s Machete which came out around the same time. But I found Machete to be better made and with a better understanding of what it was trying to do. Rodriguez is a better director of that kind of movie than Stallone.

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      • Statham’s an action import with a sense of humor. But in terms of star power, he’s a long way from a Schwarzenegger. I think I see what you are getting at. In a different time, Statham could have been a big star. Instead, he kind of owns this little niche of low budget action movies like Crank.

        Stallone’s not a very good director. That’s been one of the problems that has plagued his career. He probably could have stayed on top longer than he did if he would have relinquished some creative control. Schwarzenegger had the sense to collaborate with the best and let them do their jobs. Stallone collaborated with a mediocre director – himself. Or he worked with weak directors he could steamroll over.

        I can’t really weigh in on the merits of any of the Expendables movies because I just haven’t given them a fair chance. But I’ve never been all that nostalgic for 80s action. So the premise doesn’t appeal to me all that much.

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        • That was my point re: Statham. If he’d come on the scene 2 decades earlier in an environment that was more accommodating to action stars of that type, he probably would have been a bigger star.

          Schwarzenegger worked with Cameron, Verhoeven and McTiernan. Even David Ayer who helmed Sabotage is a good director. Who’s Stallone’s frequent directorial collaborators? Renny Harlin. George P Cosmatos. Simon West. Definitely not on the same level. Like I noted in my article, there’s a reason why most auteur directors (aside from Walter Hill and Jim Mangold) have steered clear of working with Stallone: He can’t stand back and let them do what they need to do.

          Of the old school action stars, one could say that the one who had the most sense is Chuck Norris. In the early 90s, when he realized his days as leading action man were coming to an end, he moved on. He segued into TV with Walker Texas Ranger and Total Gym infomercials (My father has a Total Gym and it’s one of the few infomercial products that actually works). Today, he does political commentary and does pretty good at it, even if I may not agree with his point of view a good majority of the time.

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        • I figured that’s what you were getting at with Statham. He definitely could have been bigger in the 80s and 90s than he was in the aughts. But he’s still had a pretty decent run.

          Totally agree with your points on Arnold vs. Sly. WTHH to Sylvester Stallone is required reading.

          Norris played his cards right. Honestly, in the 80s, I don’t think he was as big as a lot of these other guys. So it made sense for him to move to TV early. Arnold and Sly were still making movies. Arnold was still one of the biggest stars in the world and Stallone was still pretty big. Norris didn’t have nearly as many movie options. Guys like Seagal and Van Damme were hogging the spotlight. So TV and Infomercials made sense.

          Norris also had the advantage of staying fit. He doesn’t wear a mumu like Seagal or have a raging drug problem like Van Damme did. He can still play on his old action hero image and he’s not causing anyone headaches. Except maybe those who disagree with his politics.

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        • I think if Jason Statham had been around in the 80’s or 90’s, he would’ve had a somewhat more successful career. As it is, Statham has had a level of success that Chuck Norris or Jean Claude Van Damme had back in the 80’s/early 90’s. Keep in mind that back in the 80’s, Chuck Norris’ films were always just modest hits: I was looking at his filmography on Wikipedia and I was surprised to see his 80’s era films such as Missing In Action, Invasion U.S.A., Code Of Silence, Lone Wolf McQuade, etc. all did between $6 Million and $20 Million domestically. Chuck Norris was never a big box office draw, but instead consistently made modestly budgeted action flicks that consistently delivered in a modest range. That’s sort of where Jason Statham has been with his career this past decade, making films that usually earn between $20M and $40M domestically, probably adjusted for inflation about what Norris’ films made in the 80’s. Jean Claude Van Damme was also in a similar situation in his late 80’s/early 90’s heyday, except he had one breakout legitimate hit with Time Cop, but otherwise his career was the same.

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        • Nothing really to add by my agreement.

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  3. u need article about batman effect or oscar curse dont compare stallonne to jason jason has no oscar noms copland and rocky shows he had potental

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  4. ebert call stallone the next brando . With the exception of gibson ford and stallone non of the actors have been nomanianted for oscar or even gave an amazing performance outside their action hero personan. Stallone gibson and ford are the real actors in expendables maybe willis too

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  5. if anyone dont think sly can make a comeback here a link to a dramtic role i smell oscar http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3854566/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_1

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  6. stalone should really go back to drama

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  7. Stupid, stupid, and stupid. The movie was so stupid. I watched in amazement as old men moved like athletes and killed bad men with abandoned. I watched with incredulity as plans were made on the cuff for battling world class villains. I laughed in spite of myself at the off hand humor between the supporting heroes. 90 minutes of my life wasted…Not!

    What you naysayers are missing is that these guys make me feel comfortable. It’s like getting together with my old college buddies and talking about old times. As we get older, the old stories get better, the girls prettier, and the heroes more hero-ish. I was a god in my twenties and this movie is merely retelling of the same stories we all wanted to live in the good old days. We lie to one another, knowing its a lie but laugh all the same. One lie begets another, one story up by the next, and pretty soon it’s Rambo flying in on the back of an eagle saving Dolph, Jet, and Jason from the evil clutches of Mel, all the while dancing with Harrison at the CIA. I loved it. For an instant I was there with my old friends. Fighting along side of my buddies. Young and strong once again.

    It is sometimes a mistake to take things too literally. I doubt that anyone buying a ticket to this movie really expected a literary masterpiece. It was exactly as advertised. But the subliminal message was powerful to those who are ready to receive it. Come spend a few minutes with your old friends….

    And Bruce Willis is an asshole for not playing along.

    Another excellent article Lebeau. Too bad you’re too young to understand 🙂

    “Old man, look at my life. I’m a lot like you were…”

    Brad Deal

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    • lol – I haven’t been called “too young” in quite a while. Thanks!

      I have heard the latest Expendables movie compared to an off-brand GI Joe movie. I believe it was meant as a compliment. The author was saying that the movie was cartoonish but fun. I think The Expendables franchise is sold almost entire on nostalgia. If you weren’t invested in these meatheads 30 years ago, you’re not going to care what they are up to now.

      I was a big fan of Harrison Ford back in the day. But I feel like I get my Ford fix these days. I may actually check this one out to see Gibson and Snipes. Don’t see much of those guys any more for obvious reasons. I have heard Banderas steals the show. But I was never a Stallone fan. I was a weird kid and didn’t watch a lot of R-rated action or horror in the 80s. So I don’t have the same nostalgia for those genres as some of my peers.

      And Bruce Willis is an asshole for a lot of reasons.

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    • I don’t disagree, but what about the 40mins of wasted screen time with a bunch of young actors that you will never hear of again? They aren’t your old college buddies, they aren’t even the next crop of action stars, they were non-descript faces.

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      • Ahhhh, what young actors? There were young actors?….I got up to go potty and must have missed them…

        What the Hell…I missed the young actors! I spent 40 minutes in the potty…at least my time wasn’t completely wasted …

        Seriously, I didn’t go to see anybody but my old buddies. Everything else was just something I had to sit through to get back to my old friends. I don’t know the names of any youngsters, I don’t care, I didn’t go to see that part of the movie. In fact, I’m gonna ask to get my ticket pro rated. 40/90=.44x$8.50=$3.77 refund. Yeah, that’s what I’m talk’in about…

        When pigs fly

        Brad Deal

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  8. it looks good dont care if it flopped i liked the first 2 iam gonna see it anyway stallone will probably find another franchise to fall back on he has more potential then arnold cause unlike arnold stallone does flex his acitng chops eventually arnold will too old for action roles

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  9. Nick saw “The Expendables 3″:
    https://znculturecast.wordpress.com/2014/08/15/nick-saw-the-expendables-3/

    Posted by Nick! on August 15, 2014

    The Expendables franchise is one of diminishing returns. The first had the novelty of having (mostly) a bunch of aging action stars from the ’80s and ’90s in one movie together. The result was really not the sum of its parts. The second installment improved the quality with much more humor, a stronger narrative, and a campy amount of meta references to the respective stars’ past. The newest entry tries very hard, but comes incredibly short in everything it attempts.

    The script tones down the meta references dramatically from the second installment (which, let’s face it, is probably a good thing – Expendables 2 really pushed that as far as it could go), but doesn’t really replace it with anything of substance. The story is really all over the place with the tone, the themes, and the basic narrative, that the film doesn’t really know what it wants to be (other than the currently over-played “I’m old, but I’m still top dog” routine).

    Hindering matters even further is that I didn’t feel at any time that any of the characters were in any danger at all. While the action is slick, when our heroes are gunning down hordes of henchmen without them really being in any noticeable peril, the film loses any sort of tension. The PG-13 rating was disappointing too. Incredibly bloodless and a bit too obvious when they cut away from seeing a bad guy get taken down. I realize that was a creative decision that Stallone wanted to enforce, but it is still disappointing that he felt he needed to do that to reach a broader audience.

    We have a couple of new additions to the Expendables. Beyond younger recruits (who are completely generic and interchangeable), Wesley Snipes, Harrison Ford, Mel Gibson, and Antonio Banderas join Stallone and crew. Ford is an incredible upgrade from Bruce Willis as the team’s handler. While he does the standard “Harrison Ford Gruff”, he looks like he’s having a blast in the role. Sadly, Gibson (an inspired choice for a villain) is completely wasted in what could have been a really great, fun role. This is probably the biggest sin Expendables 3 could have had (especially since the bar was set surprisingly high with Jean-Claude Van-Damme in the second movie).

    Oddly enough, after a lot of attention to Snipes joining the film, his character, while given a lot of attention during the first act (including establishing connections between him, Stallone, and Gibson), largely falls into the background as the movie progresses. He is mostly replaced in emphasis with Banderas. Even though this is a big script problem, I’m not too bothered by it mostly because Banderas is the best part of this movie. He completely steals every scene he is in. He’s absolutely hilarious. If they make an Expendables 4, they need to bring him back.

    I don’t know. Maybe the magic is running out for this series. I sat there and was reasonably entertained, but much of the movie just felt flat for me. I know these are not meant to be very good cinema, but even for disposable entertainment, it doesn’t quite work. I guess you can tell there is a problem when the series continues to pile on new characters, but ones from the original entry are still completely undeveloped (seriously, what does Randy Couture bring to these movies?).

    If a fourth entry is commissioned (which there is some doubt given the recent pirated leak), I really hope they look into what isn’t working. I really can’t pin my finger on it exactly, but the series is missing something. I want this series to be successful, and I want to like these movies more. But the novelty of seeing all these actors together is nearly extinguished. They need a new hook.

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  10. Excellent look back on Sly and Arnold’s careers, Lebeau. Sly had the biggest year of his career in 1985 with Rambo 2 and Rocky 4, the second and third biggest box office hits of the year, just when Arnold was rising up as a challenger. Interesting comparison between how Sly was delivering a string of misses with Cobra, Rambo 3, Lock Up, Rocky 5, etc. while Arnold was increasingly delivering home runs with Predator, Twins, Total Recall, T2, etc. during the same time. By the beginning of the 90’s, Arnold had taken Sly’s crown so to speak.

    I grew up a huge fan of 80’s and 90’s action films, so I was exactly the intended audience for The Expendables. You’re right, Lebeau, The Expendables was presented as the Justice League of action movie stars!

    I think Expendables 3 is flopping for a number of reasons. Yes, that leak has got to hurt a lot. Last I heard, over 5 million people have watched the high-quality leak online, so there goes 5 million people that might have paid 10 bucks each to see it in the theatre. Also, the word of mouth on the quality of the film has been less than encouraging. But that leak was beyond their control. One thing that bothered me was the decision to release this as a PG-13. Stallone said the producers wanted to “reach as wide an audience as possible”. Really? So you just think that with a PG-13 rating, now 13 year old boys are going to be interested in seeing an action movie starring a roster of old action heroes? ‘Gee, we couldn’t see the first two because they’re rated R, but now we can go see this one!’. No, whatever rating you give Expendables 3 you’re not getting a younger audience to show up, matter of fact you risk alienating the audience you already have by doing that. Dumb move.

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    • Thanks. Glad you liked the piece. I had been kicking around the idea of doing an Arnold vs. Sly Smackdown article. Might still do it. But since The Expendables was the big new release of the week, I wanted to bade this week’s A-list around it. When Expendables 3 bombed, it gave me my pov.

      The Expendables is really an extension of Stallone’s career. It was his redemption story. So the failure of the third movie is primarily his failure. If the Expendables is dead, his resurgence is probably going to be short-lived. He will need another hit and he doesn’t seem to be capable of producing one.

      Stallone recently appeared on a talk show to promote the Expendables and he mockingly blamed Schwarzenegger for his bombs of the 80s and 90s. Stallone said he did Rhinestone because he was worried Arnold would do it if he didn’t. I hope Stallone was kidding because it’s a ridiculous claim. There is no way Arnold was circling Rhinestone in 1984. He was finishing off his contract with Dino De Laurentiis and starring in The Terminator.

      But Stallone’s talk of a fierce rivalry struck me as very true. He had just had his ego rocked by Eddie Murphy and Beverly Hills Cop. And then here was this other guy bearing down on him like an unstoppable robot from the future. I think Arnold rattled Sly the same way he used to rattle competitors in body building competitions. I think Oscar and Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot were a direct reaction to the success of Twins and Kindergarten Cop. Judge Dredd and Demolition Man were probably at least partially motivated by Arnold’s successful sci fi projects. From the beginning, Arnold was always at least two steps ahead of Sly.

      But Sly stayed in the game. Even after everyone had counted him out, he was still trying to find a way back in. And dammit, he found one. Against all odds, he found a way in. Neither he nor his friends would ever be A-list again. But they could enjoy basking in reflected glory. While it lasted.

      Unless Expendables 3 does gangbusters overseas (which is a possibility), that reflected glory is probably over. But you can bet Stallone will keep trying to find a way to reclaim it. You can knock him down. But he keeps getting back up.

      Totally agree that the PG-13 rating was a mistake. It totally invalidates the premise of the series. Old school action heroes in an old school action movie. That means R-rated violence and a minimum of CGI.

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      • I seriously have doubts we will see an Expendables 4. I was thinking about it, and what other 80’s/90’s action heroes are left to mine? Jackie Chan expressed interest in possibly joining for part 4, ok so you can include him for fresh blood, and you could always twist Steven Seagal’s arm to finally dive in, but beyond that (unless there’s one or two I’m just not thinking of right now) Stallone already has gotten almost everybody of note from that era in the past 3 movies.

        Expendables 3 opened poorly here in America and looks like it will be lucky to break 50M domestically, but the other two films have done tremendously well overseas so I would be surprised if this one doesn’t at least make a modest profit. So I think his Expendables franchise is probably done, though since Stallone’s last couple of non-Rocky/Rambo/Expenables films have done poorly, I would think he would want to push for one more because otherwise he doesn’t seem to have much else left. Although he has been vocal that Rambo 5 may be his next film, which makes sense because again nothing else has been hitting these past couple years. But even if this represents Stallone’s end of his big-screen comeback, I will always be amazed that he accomplished the comeback he did. Movie stars virtually never make a big-screen comeback in their 60’s, yet somehow against all odds Stallone accomplished that.

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        • Stallone’s comeback is amazing. I would have bet against it if anyone would have taken that bet..

          The only chance the Expendables franchise has is fantastic overseas business. Otherwise, it’s dead. But fantastic overseas business is not outside the question.

          I imagine there are still some folks to be mined for Expendables 4 if it happened. What about Eddie Murphy? Problem is, now that the bloom is off the rose, would any of those former A-listers want to be involved. Or would he be stuck with Michael Dudikoff?

          Rambo 5 is probably Stallone’s most viable vehicle. But Rambo 4 didn’t make that much money. And since nothing else Stallone is doing is working, I have my doubts anyone would fund Rambo 5. I know I wouldn’t!

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        • Lebeau, you can’t be stuck with Michael Dudikoff! He is the American Ninja! Perhaps you may have overlooked his acting talents, in his fine body of work. I recommend you start with Quicksand, which was somewhat perplexingly overlooked in the Oscar Noms in 2002/3.

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        • Lol. In the Steven Seagal article, there is a clip of Arsenio Hall asking Seagal about action rivals like Van Damme and Dudikoff. It’s pretty hysterical.

          Somehow I missed Quicksand along with the Academy. Shame on us all! 😉

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        • Couldn’t find the clip in the article, but I did find it online. From what I saw he asks him about JCVD and Jeff “The Perfect Weapon” Speakman, no mention of “The Dude” though. Seagal wouldn’t dare speak ill of the American Ninja!!

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        • I rewatched the clip after making that comment. You’re right. No mention of The Dude. I misremembered. It was JCVD and Jeff Speakman. Lucky for Seagal he didn’t besmirch the name of the American Ninja.

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        • The Expendables 3: 10 Action Behemoths The Franchise Is Still Missing:
          http://whatculture.com/film/expendables-3-10-action-behemoths-franchise-still-missing.php

          There’s a lot of (old) new blood that deserve a spot in this franchise!

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    • The Real Villain of ‘The Expendables 3′ Is Not Piracy, But Mediocrity:
      http://screenrant.com/the-expendables-3-piracy-box-office/

      Published by Rob Keyes

      The Expendables 3 Laughing The Real Villain of The Expendables 3 Is Not Piracy, But Mediocrity

      The Expendables 3 opened in theaters this weekend, although you wouldn’t know it by looking at the top three grossing films. It was beat out by Let’s Be Cops and the second and third weekends for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Guardians of the Galaxy, respectively. The disappointing opening weekend box office haul for Sylvester Stallone and his crew of mercenaries continues the downward trend of the series’ financial earnings in their theatrical runs, potentially made slightly worse by online piracy.

      The Controversy: Piracy

      Unfortunately for Lionsgate, the box office appeal of The Expendables 3 potentially took an extra hit from online piracy. Somehow, a high quality screener leaked online on July 23rd, a full three weeks before the film was scheduled to release in theaters. The studio was able to get a little help from the U.S. District Court in rushing the process of uncovering the identities of websites they are now suing, for alleged responsibility in sharing the film online. Since many torrent and filesharing sites are overseas, there may be little the studio can do – and certainly nothing they can do to stop downloaders from seeking out the file. All of the headlines surrounding the leak only helped draw more attention – and potentially more pirates – to it. There’s no telling how much of an impact the leak had on the opening weekend for the film, as many of the downloaders may not have paid to see it in theaters anyway – or are in markets where it’s not available in theaters.

      We do know The Expendables 3 fell short of Lionsgate’s expectations. It made less than half of what The Expendables 2 did in its opening. According to “experts” (via The New York Times), only a smaller percentage of the total downloads occurred in North America, and had every one of those half a million viewers bought an opening weekend ticket, that would have only resulted in another $4 million or so – still making it the least successful opening of the series, by far.

      The Truth: Mediocrity

      The bigger issue is how The Expendables 3 falls short of fan and critic expectations, indicating that the biggest negative factors might simply be the quality of the film itself and franchise fatigue. On Rotten Tomatoes, The Expendables 3 sits with the lowest score of the three films, and it has the lowest average score according to Metacritic as well. If you couple that with lackluster marketing efforts in the film’s bland posters and trailers, there really wasn’t much going for the third film – especially when you take into account Nu Image, Millennium Films and Lionsgate dropping its “hardcore” R-rating to shift focus towards lesser-known youngsters instead of the franchise’s trademark of featuring older celebrities. That’s not going to help the already sour word-of-mouth.

      The film seemed to have lost sight of its selling points, trading screen time of veteran action stars for attractive fresh faces, while toning down the action for the PG-13 rating. Combining that with an overall package – which is clearly less appealing for existing fans – and the series is killing itself with its own attempt at pandering to younger viewers during a month where there’s stiffer competition. Piracy or not, The Expendables first needs to worry about headlines like this one from The Verge, which reads “I watched ‘The Expendables 3′ in theaters and I want my money back.” Ouch.

      We’ll have to wait and see if The Expendables 3 can perform nearly as well as its predecessors worldwide when it’s all said and done (they made $274-304 million each). Is there room for The Expendables 4 and should the series stick to its original target audience as a way to differentiate itself from the pack?

      Like

  11. its gibson comeback too he hasnt acted in a hit film since signs

    Like

  12. there should be a comedy expandable s with washed up comedy stars like bill murray steve martin chevy case Eddie murphy and jim carrey

    Like

    • Who Would You Cast in a Comedy Equivalent of ‘The Expendables’?

      http://www.lightscameranews.com/news/316681

      The third installment of The Expendables opens this weekend, and with it comes a few more notable action heroes added to the ensemble cast. Harrison Ford, Mel Gibson and Wesley Snipes have joined returning stars Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Dolph Lundgren for what now seems like a dream for anyone who enjoyed going to the movies in 1993.

      Eventually the Expendables series is going to run out of casting-gimmick possibilities. Is there even any ’80s or ’90s male action star left to bring into the fold?

      I would like to propose a way to keep the idea behind The Expendables alive with a whole new enterprise: a comedy equivalent starring all the legends of the funniest movies from the ’80s and ’90s. Call it the “The Hystericals.”

      Depending on your sense of humor, maybe that means the same cast would have to be involved. But as someone who doesn’t think Stallone and Schwarzenegger are their own comedic counterparts, I’ve got some ideas of which actors might be:

      Stallone: Dan Aykroyd – Because he’s the sort of guy who would seem desperate enough to hold on to the nostalgia and put something like this together.

      Schwarzenegger: Eddie Murphy – He’s been off his game for longer than he was on it, and it would probably start with just a cameo.

      Ford: Bill Murray – He’s probably too good for this, but he’ll play along after a while, though probably only briefly.

      Gibson: Chevy Chase – Not that he’s nearly as crazy, but if he were to appear he’d definitely be the villain.

      Lundgren: Steve Guttenberg – Low tier, but he was a star for awhile.

      Snipes: John Cusack – Always bet on Cusack.

      Bruce Willis: Steve Martin – Because he’s probably too good for this and would likely bail quickly.

      Jason Statham: Ben Stiller – The biggest of the new blood.

      Jet Li: Johnny Knoxville – Because he’s a different sort of comedy star (does stunt humor parallel martial arts?).

      Jean-Claude Van Damme: Paul Hogan – Foreigner who had a brief moment.

      Randy Couture: Patton Oswalt – Alternative stand-up is the comedy version of the UFC, right?

      Terry Crews: Dwayne Johnson – An athlete turned actor who actually had done more in the other genre.

      Kelsey Grammar: David Hasselhoff – A TV star who actually had done more in the other genre.

      Kellan Lutz: Jonah Hill – The new guy.

      Like

      • 5 popular movie genres that should do an Expendables:
        http://www.wow247.co.uk/blog/2014/08/06/popular-movie-genres-that-should-do-an-expendables-46122/

        6 Aug 2014

        The Expendables 3 hits cinemas soon, once again uniting a host of Hollywood big-hitters in a saga that both celebrates and pokes affectionate fun at famous action movies.

        But why can’t other film types have their answer to this too? All you’d need is self-awareness, humour, and – most of all – a great ensemble cast. Here are 5 popular movie genres that should get the Expendables treatment.
        Horror

        Horror Expendables

        Suggested cast: Bruce Campbell, Neve Campbell, Jamie Lee Curtis, Robert Englund, Doug Bradley, Tony Todd

        Suggested plot: Haunted slasher survivors including Ash, Sidney Prescott and Laurie Strode head off to a retreat for PTSD sufferers in a remote luxury cabin. But when their former adversaries return to hunt them down, they must combine forces to fend off the likes of Freddy, Jason and Pinhead, with chainsaws and coat-hangers in hand.
        Sci-fi

        Expendables Sci-Fi

        Suggested cast: Sigourney Weaver, Nathan Fillion, Katee Sackhoff, Patrick Stewart, Mark Hamill, Lance Henriksen

        Suggested plot: With the future of Earth in peril due to a war-mongering race of ferocious aliens and an all-powerful device known as ‘the Macguffin’, a sagely space captain, wise-cracking smuggler, tough mercenary, resourceful scientist and nerdy genius team-up to save the day. Henriksen – the only man ever to be killed on screen by an Alien, Terminator and Predator – dies in the second-act.
        Comedy

        Expendables Comedy

        Suggested cast: Steve Martin, Eddie Murphy, Jason Segel, Seth Rogen, Ben Stiller, Will Ferrell, Anna Faris, Larry David, Tina Fey

        Suggested plot: With Adam Sandler continuing to destroy the good name of comedy in Hollywood, the greatest funnypeople from recent times unite to create the most hilarious movie ever made. Tension arises over the veterans’ taste for anarchy vs the younger crew’s love of slacker gags, while Larry David bumbles around getting himself into various cringe-inducing scrapes.
        Crime

        Expendables Crime

        Suggested cast: Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Denzel Washington, Malcom McDowell, Joe Pesci, Beat Takashi, Jack Nicholson, Dexter Fletcher

        Suggested plot: When a major business deal between the East Coast mafia and a UK syndicate goes awry, the transatlantic fall-out sees copious hits, double-crosses and grandstanding speeches unfold in a twisty-turny tale that takes in a corrupt FBI agent (Washington) and a Yakuza assassin (Takashi). Also, Pesci gets to scare the crap out of people at bars.
        Romance

        Expendables romance

        Suggested cast: Kate Hudson, Meg Ryan, Woody Allen, Audrey Tatou, Ashton Kutcher, Jennifer Aniston, Gerard Depardieu

        Suggested plot: Heartbroken after walking in on her husband cheating on her at her daughter’s wedding, May (Ryan) decides to join the horrified newlyweds (Hudson and Kutcher) in Paris for a wild week of mid-life crisis and whirlwind romance. There she meets charismatic widower Jean-Claude (Depardieu). But when her bumbling husband (Allen) flies over to win her back, and unexpectedly falls for both Jean-Claude’s daughter (Tatou) and fiesty American tourist Belle (Aniston), the scene is set for a whole host of saucy hook-ups, love triangles and misunderstandings.

        Like

  13. 5 Surefire Ways To Fix The Broken Expendables Franchise:
    http://www.cinemablend.com/new/5-Surefire-Ways-Fix-Broken-Expendables-Franchise-66813.html

    By Gabe Toro 2014-08-18 08:40:57

    This weekend, The Expendables 3 crashed and burned, collecting a dismal $16.2 million, by far the weakest opening in the series. This franchise has been something of an institution, giving fans a chance to see some of the members of the Action Hero Hall Of Fame in one place. But the novelty of this seems to have worn off: the second film was considerably weaker than the first domestically, and this new film might not even cross $50 million stateside. And while the movies have never been a critical darling, this one garnered the weakest reviews yet.

    You could say some of that comes from the PG-13 rating, which kept away older action diehards. Or that the movie’s giant piracy leak damaged the final tallies. But the fans just didn’t show up to a film that added Wesley Snipes, Mel Gibson and Harrison Ford to the ever-growing roster of characters, three legends with serious box office pedigree. The formula seemed simple at the beginning, but it’s clear from audience dissatisfaction that it’s not working. Time to change it up, and drastically. Here are five ways to fix The Expendables.

    Shorten The Roster
    Just how many Expendables are there? The cast for this new film was so massive that they needed two whole Expendables teams. There were so many Expendables that you couldn’t even fit them on one poster. Audiences know these movies are overstuffed because of the first film, which promised the involvement of Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger in the ads, only for them to pop up in a single dialogue scene that played like a lazy Marvel Easter Egg.

    The point of these films is to highlight the best and the brightest in action history. So, yes, you might want to add a Randy Couture or a Ronda Rousey in there to spice it up, and give a boost to an as-yet-underdeveloped action star. And it’s very cool that, despite no real action credits to his name, the Expendables franchise turned Terry Crews into a heavyweight of sorts, even if it meant he was suddenly too big to show up in the entire middle portion of The Expendables 3. But Jackie Chan nailed it – what’s the point in joining all these actors when they barely have any screentime and maybe one or two lines? They were famous for being stars – they’re the main course, not ingredients you splice into a great meal. A good five or six will do, specifically genuine action legends.

    Kill Some Guys
    The series is called The Expendables. Why is it that not only does everybody survive, but team members actively risk their lives for each other, like the way the squad randomly breaks buddy Wesley Snipes out of prison in the new movie? They’re expendable, they have just about no use to the rest of the world. If they’re dragging down a mission, cut them loose. Particularly the older dudes: when Stallone’s Barney Ross misses a deadline at the end of The Expendables 3, the team should have realized this was a 67 year old man, and got the hell out of Dodge to save their own skin. Barney would understand.

    So if you do this whole thing again, kill some guys. Raise the stakes: it’s already a miracle that these older guys can still stand up straight, let alone participate in acrobatics. Having them become basically invincible as they run through a hail of gunfire is approaching parody territory. The next film needs to open with the Expendables on a suicide mission that is actually very much a suicide mission. And you don’t even need major casualties: through three movies, the audiences couldn’t name one interesting fact about Randy Couture’s Toll Road. But having him take a slug to the head would be a reminder that some missions shouldn’t feature a bunch of cinematic legends laughing their asses off as they fire millions of rounds into faceless enemies. And speaking of which…

    No More Guns
    These guys are action legends because they can kick ass. Anyone can grab a gun and randomly fire it at a bunch of shooting gallery goons. But these guys were intimidating because of their fists and feet, and sometimes their quick wits. Yeah, guns were a part of the equation, but guns didn’t make them stars. There is nothing more boring than the supposedly “heroic” moments of The Expendables 2 where Simon West framed some of the greatest action legends of all time standing side by side in the same shot, firing round after round into armies of stuntmen.

    One of the biggest cinematic crimes in The Expendables 3 was the fact that Jet Li showed up at the very last minute and was called upon just to fire a gun. Which of these is a Jet Li movie, Firearm Of Legend or Fist Of Legend? Jet needed to throw down with people. Wesley Snipes needed to use his roundhouse kicks. Victor Ortiz is a boxer, he should be punching guys out. These guys have giant muscles, and they aren’t going to use them? Maybe someone should remind Stallone that Rocky didn’t get in the ring and fire twenty shots at Apollo Creed. Hell, even Rambo used exploding arrows. A little diversity in hurting people never hurt anyone.

    Hire John Hyams
    On the surface, hiring Patrick Hughes for The Expendables 3 wasn’t a terrible idea. Stallone wanted a different vibe for this go-round, so the fact that Hughes represented “new blood” was a cool concept. Except that Hughes went on to direct a movie that’s almost exactly like the first two films, and maybe even less competent. And one that was PG-13! The action gods wept! This didn’t work, and it’s clear from watching the movie that Stallone was seeking a collaborator, not a filmmaker who would enforce his will on the movie.

    Which is why John Hyams, or someone like Hyams, needed the work. Hyams has been working steadily in the direct-to-DVD realm for awhile, but he exceeded all expectations with Universal Soldier: Day Of Reckoning with Expendables 2 cast mates Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren and Scott Adkins. The film is hypnotic, suspenseful, brutal, and it deals with the ugly ramifications of a cycle of violence, while ALSO featuring some of the most incredible fight sequences you’ve ever seen. But maybe Hyams is busy: what about John Woo, who turned Chow Yun-Fat immortal in The Killer and Hard Boiled and has been around the block a few times? What about Walter Hill, who directed badass ensembles in classics like Southern Comfort and Extreme Prejudice, not to mention The Warriors? Why not Gareth Evans, who basically reinvented modern action movie cinema with The Raid? Why not anyone with any sort of vision?

    Find A New Location That Isn’t Eastern Europe
    Okay, we get it, you guys want to save up on location shooting. The first film shot in Rio and Louisiana, though both looked interchangeable. The bulk of the second and third films, meanwhile, were shot in Bulgaria, with the third film’s climax in the you’ve-gotta-be-kidding-me made-up country of Azmenistan. In addition to being super-affordable locations where studio Millennium shoots nearly all their action films, these far-off places offer indistinct towns and cities for the characters to blow up, destroy and completely annihilate from the map with little to no consequence. What happens to the viewer is an endless flurry of gray surroundings, chunks of buildings coming off like legos, armies of extras being mowed down, and entire provinces being turned to rubble from the sheer immensity of the violence. They’re essentially action movie playsets, featuring old action movie standbys like shipping docks and abandoned warehouses. Just because every action movie used these locations doesn’t mean they represent some sort of fond memory.

    You don’t need get your ass to Mars to make a great action movie today, but you do need diversity of locations. Why not take a cue from Predator and set the action in the deep jungle? Why not have the crew forced to do battle in the city, banging the concrete and dodging bullets? If you want to go full-on adventure, how about some sort of hidden temple, or a monastery. Churches, even libraries might be fun. An abandoned video store, to emphasize how these guys were the titans of the VHS era? A haunted house, to mix genres a bit? There’s no end to the options. It’s all a part of making a movie that looks and feels nothing like the first three. Audiences today are too smart for “Azmenistan”. Give them somewhere real.

    Like

    • Agreed. I think it would be great if Robert Rodriguez directed an Expendables movie. As he proved with Machete, the El Mariachi movies and the original Sin City, he knows how to make Pulp fun.

      Like

      • Yeah, but Sin City 2 is having a rough time at the box office this weekend.

        Like

        • I noticed. I saw it yesterday and was kinda disappointed. While the original was my favorite film of 2005, this one is entertaining. But not that memorable.

          Like

        • The visual style was a big component of the first film. But almost a decade later, it isn’t as impressive as it used to be. We’ve seen a lot of green screen in the past 9 years. Also, I hear the source material is much weaker for this film then it was for the first.

          Honestly, I’ve had enough Frank Miller for one lifetime.

          Like

        • I’ve just about had enough Robert Rodriguez for one lifetime. And unlike others that would say that, I started out as a fan. I still think his first three films, El Mariachi, Desperado, and From Dusk ‘Til Dawn are wildly entertaining films for what they are. I can still re-watch those movies and enjoy the heck out of them. His more recent films have left me wanting. His Machete films are entertaining enough, so long as you’re in the mood for intentional cheese. Charlie Sheen as the President in Machete 2 says it all. But there has been a major slip in quality since those first couple films, to the point that I would not want Rodriguez to direct an Expendables 4, in the unlikely event that film would ever happen. No thanks.

          Like

        • Rodriquez has always been hit or miss with me. I can usually sit through any of his movies. But I don’t think I have ever loved any of them. I remember liking the first Spy Kids, but I have heard the sequels were terrible. The first Machete took a clever joke and spread it too thin. I heard the sequel killed the joke completely. Sin City had an interesting visual style. Sin City 2 I hear is left overs. Maybe he would fare better if he stopped making sequels?

          Like

        • My favorites of his are the original Sin City (his best film period), From Dusk Till Dawn and the first two El Mariachi’s (the third one suffered from setting up subplots and never following through and more importantly: UNDERUSING SALMA HAYEK). The first Spy Kids was a fun family movie, the sequels less so. The Faculty was mildly entertaining but pretty forgettable. The original Machete was good but I never saw the sequel. The less said about Shark Boy And lava Girl the better.

          It’s often been stated that Tarantino is the artist, the one who makes the films with the lasting impact, while Rodriguez is the craftsman. While that statement is generalizing, there is some truth there. Rodriguez loves making movies and he’s very good at it (I recommend his book “Rebel Without A Crew” especially to aspiring filmmakers. It tells how he made the first El Mariachi and is full of interesting and for those of us who aspire to one day make films of our own, useful, info).However, in terms of subject matter and depth, he lacks the ambition of Tarantino. While Tarantino’s trying to make art-film variations on the genre films he loved growing up, Rodriguez is more interested in making genre films. I would also say that Tarantino draws on a wider range of influences, going back to Howard Hawks and the French New Wave. Rodriguez’s primary influences are Spielberg, Carpenter and Scorsese.

          Like

        • Realistically, it’s unfair to compare any film-maker to Tarantino when it comes to range of influences. Tarantino is tapped into everything.

          Like

        • What Went Wrong?: Vol. 51 – Macho Sequel Edition:
          http://znculturecast.wordpress.com/2014/08/24/what-went-wrong-vol-51-macho-sequel-edition/

          Posted by CultureCast-Z on August 24, 2014

          In 2010, The Expendables, a team-up of all-star 80s, 90s, and 2000s action heroes debuted at number one in the box office and ultimately grossed over 100 million dollars in the domestic box office alone. The sequel took a domestic dip, but ended up over 300 million in grosses worldwide (the sequel was also a far superior film that was a lot more fun). The recently released Expendables 3, however, tanked upon it’s domestic debut. After two weekends in theaters, the film hasn’t even earned what the second film did in its first weekend at the box office. The three-quel will ultimately earn less than half of either film in grosses and will rely heavily on overseas dollars to become profitable. I can’t imagine a theatrically released Expendables 4 will happen any time soon. So, what exactly went wrong?

          Piracy is at least partially to blame. When I saw a news item about how a DVD-quality leak of Expendables 3 became widely available on the Internet weeks before the film’s theatrical release, I knew the project was doomed to box office mediocrity (it was downloaded over two million times in just a few short weeks). But other factors played into the film’s failure as well. Expendables 3 was already a sequel to a sequel to a film designed to capture a wave of fleeting 80s nostalgia. The ploy worked well once and fairly well a second time, but it was never going to last. Ultimately, you just can’t expect success doing the same thing over and over again – something needs to be fresh about the experience.

          Arguably, the casting of Ronda Rousey as well as the other, younger Expendables team (including Kellen Lutz, who I like but who has not done a great job picking roles thus far outside of lucking into the Twilight franchise) was designed to bring in a younger audience. Additionally, the PG-13 nature of the film meant that younger teenagers could see the movie without needing a parent to buy them a ticket (it is the first PG-13 rated film in the franchise). Unfortunately, Expendables 3 happened to open one week after the successful Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film reboot and just two weeks after the mega-successful Guardians of the Galaxy. Ronda Rousey or not, the project just wasn’t going to go toe-to-toe with those two films.

          The high quality leaked torrent of the film coupled with an unfortunate PG-13 rating coupled with audience disinterest coupled with intense competition at the box office just killed Expendables 3 and it’s chances of a healthy domestic gross. The film will likely make up ground overseas, but I don’t think there’s much of a chance we’ll see an Expendables 4 any time soon – unless Sylvester Stallone and company can keep the budget to a more manageable 50 million or so. There just won’t be much money to be made in the film franchise unless that happens. Additionally, Stallone will have to really strive to freshen up the concept, because the experience is greatly in danger of growing stale.

          Another sequel to a macho film was released this past weekend, but it failed under a different set of circumstances. In 2005, when the comic book to film adaptation was still somewhat novel, Dimension Films’ Sin City opened to a surprising 29 million dollar debut and solid reviews. The film, captured in striking black-and-white, featured an ensemble cast led by Jessica Alba, Bruce Willis, and Mickey Rourke. The fresh film concept, based on the popular comic book series by Frank Miller, was one of the most faithful comic-to-film adaptations of its day and made plenty of fans. A sequel film, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, flopped over this past weekend, grossing a scant six million dollars for the Friday to Sunday frame. So, what went wrong?

          Production on A Dame to Kill For began in October 2012, with a theatrical release date set for October 2013. The sequel, once again produced by Dimension Films, was delayed almost an entire year to ostensibly take advantage of a late summer release, as well as the fact that director Robert Rodriguez’s film project Machete Kills was to be released in October 2013. The summer release date, however, ended up helping to bury A Dame to Kill For, as it’s late summer date essentially killed it off. Even though this August has been busy at the box office, late August is still the dregs of the summer release schedule. There was little chance of this breaking out on such a weekend.

          The comic book adaptation landscape has changed as well. The original Sin City film was released in 2005, a time when only three or four high profile comic book films are released each year. The past few years have seen roughly 900 comic book movies released into theaters, each one vying for precious moviegoer’s dollars. This summer alone has seen Captain America 2, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Transformers 4, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Something was going to have to give, and a lower profile film like A Dame to Kill For was the likely suspect here. There was just too much comic book competition this summer.

          A Dame to Kill For will ultimately close with less than 20 million dollars, or far less than the first film opened with – in 2005, no less. Though the film is packed with recognizable faces (including Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Evan Green), it just wasn’t ever going to have the same impact at the box office that the surprise hit first film had almost ten years ago. The profile for both director Robert Rodriguez and writer Frank Miller have taken a hit in recent years, with both men suffering film flops (The Spirit in 2008 for Miller, Machete Kills last year for Rodriguez). I don’t think it’s likely the two will reunite for a third installment, especially as the budget for A Dame to Kill For allegedly hovered around 70 million dollars, or almost twice that of the first film. The sequel will go down as an out and out disaster for Dimension.

          -Z-

          Like

        • Expendables 3 Producers Suing All Y’all!

          http://officialfan.proboards.com/thread/508594/expendables-producers-suing-all-yall

          Post by NOTORIOUS on 14 hours ago
          As much as I hate piracy and general thievery, I don’t think piracy hurt this movie’s box office as much as the fact that its the f***ing Expendables 3. It’s a Sylvester Stallone/Arnold Schwarzenegger/Dolph Lundgren/Mel Gibson movie in the year 2014. And again, it’s the third damn one!

          Post by Rocket Punch: Dream Warrior on 14 hours ago
          X-Men Origins was leaked prior to its release and still made 85mil on opening weekend. At the time I remember news that it’s primarily foreign markets that were pirating the film. While it’s shitty when these things happen for the filmmakers, piracy wasn’t the only or even main reason the movie failed. A third Expendables movie in four years leading to burnout, Stallone and Schwarzenegger having a series of bombs recently, and the franchise not having the most positive response from audiences to begin with… Add all these things together and you have your reason why the movie failed.

          Post by riseofsetian1981 on 13 hours ago
          I honestly think what hurt the film is the PG-13 rating. First two films were just as to be expected over the top, cheesy, hardcore, and action packed film that was/is a throwback to the action films we watched growing up. To go from that to a watered down version of what we got, which I am sure, alienated a lot of people in the process.

          They probably should’ve either left it at two or brought back JCVD as the twin brother that was originally rumored.

          Post by Hit Girl on 7 hours ago
          The novelty has worn off. That’s why it didn’t do as well as they would have thought.

          Like

        • The piracy issue hurt the film some, certainly, but I don’t think the Expendables 3 would have made a whole lot more if it hadn’t been leaked. Unfortunately the film is topping out with about a $40 Million take domestically, a big drop from the first films’ $105M take and Exp 2’s $85M take. The film has made almost $200M worldwide so far while still in release on a $90M budget, so it’s going to make a modest profit when all is said and done, but obviously this does signal the end of the franchise.

          Look, I’m the films’ target audience. I love action films. Especially old-school action films. I grew up on Stallone and Schwarzenegger films, I like Jason Statham and Harrison Ford and Wesley Snipes and Jet Li and Antonio Bandaras and everyone else in the cast (there’s 17 main cast members, I’m going to save some time by not listing them all), but despite all that I didn’t go see it at the show. And I’m a guy who paid to see the first two on the big screen, and enjoyed them. I even bought them on DVD because I enjoyed them. But I was turned off that after two R rated films, they decided to bring it down to a PG-13 for the third. Really? That just gave me the impression of a watered down product in a futile attempt to widen the audience. Wait, what about us guys who already like the series the way it is? And yes, the word of mouth was weak. So there are reasons why Expendables 3 flopped without the piracy issue thrown in.

          Like

        • http://officialfan.proboards.com/thread/434211/box-office-thread?page=57

          Aug 20, 2014 at 8:55pm
          Post by Crappler on Aug 20, 2014 at 8:55pm
          Aug 20, 2014 at 6:06pm andrew8798 said:
          Forecast (August 22-24)
          Might have waited too long for Sin City

          I would certainly say they did. For one, it’s sad that this film wasn’t made while Michael Clarke Duncan and Brittany Murphy were still with us. Both of their characters were in the graphic novel, with Manute playing a pretty important role. I realize Dennis Haybert took over the role.

          Robert Rodriguez may have indulged too much in vanity projects. The original Grindhouse concept was a lot of fun, but he would follow this up with TWO Machete movies which was playing on a similar note to the Grindhouse experience with Tarantino. He also decided to work on another Spy Kid film which was pretty significant failure.

          The Sin City remake should targeted a 2007 or 2008 release date. I say that not simply so that Duncan and Murphy would have been able to be in it. This would have been back when the first movie still felt new and fresh. Now it just feels like too much time has passed. You have to strike while there is still interest.

          Aug 22, 2014 at 11:08am
          Post by knapp on Aug 22, 2014 at 11:08am
          Aug 20, 2014 at 8:55pm Crappler said:
          The Sin City remake should targeted a 2007 or 2008 release date. I say that not simply so that Duncan and Murphy would have been able to be in it. This would have been back when the first movie still felt new and fresh. Now it just feels like too much time has passed. You have to strike while there is still interest.

          Problem is, that’s when Miller got grabbed to make THE SPIRIT, which he was enveloped in at the time.

          But when that movie crapped the bed, he kinda got discouraged by Hollywood and wandered away for a few years…..despite a great working relationship & personal friendship with Rodriguez, which has been maintained, he wanted to do some comic work – enter ALL STAR BATMAN & ROBIN (which still isn’t finished) and HOLY TERROR (which openly revealed to everyone that Miller’s kinda gone off the deep end in some respects).

          Aug 22, 2014 at 3:43pm via mobile
          Post by Rocket Punch With A Vengeance on Aug 22, 2014 at 3:43pm
          Sin City waited too long for the sequel. Miller hasn’t actually been loved in recent years and Rodriguez isn’t the name he used to be.

          That said, I really need to get into the young adult novel game. All I need is one hit and Hollywood will be knocking down my door.

          Like

  14. Just watched it. It’s very bad. It goes beyond the fact that it lost its balls (PG 13 and all). I’m just baffled by the decisions made with this. Lots of scenes of people traveling in vehicles set to a blue screen and dialog that just falls flat. Not even flat – it gets down right bizzare. The Kelsey Grammer dude is explaning how he has cancer out of nowhere. Then he reveals he’s joking. The stupid jokes they make are not amusing. Last 30 mins of actions and one liners was alright – it’s ridiculous in a good way. But the rest of it was cringeworthy. I feel bad for this movie. Could have been good but Stallone must have been responsible for pushing to get this made so incompetently (and maybe the producers or something). I like the second one and this one just made me angry. What the hell Sly!?! This feels like a student movie that somehow got a 100 million budget. What with all the lame sitting around and talking weird non-sense. Who greenlit this script!?! I don’t know man, I’m still angry…

    Like

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