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Dissecting Trailers: “G.I. Joe: Retaliation”

As a child of the 80s/90s, I was a huge fan of the G.I. Joe cartoon and was thoroughly disappointed by the movie G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. Why? Because it was stupid and dumb and bad and awful. But now they’ve decided to make a sequel to it with the subtitle Retaliation. It seems just from this teaser that they’ve remedied many of the flaws from the first film. Let’s dissect this bitch!

0:00 – 0:12: It’s being introduced by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Of course he’d be in this movie; it’s an action movie sequel. But I happen to like him a lot, so even before the trailer starts, I’m more enthralled.

0:13 – 0:22: Lots of studios involved. Doesn’t always mean good, but we’ll see.

0:23 – 0:31: Already the special effects look better than they did. Speaking of looking better, it’s got Adrianne Palicki…

0:32 – 0:35: The ninjas were always the best part of G.I. Joe. More of them would be nice.


0:36 – 0:51: Nice, CGI-lite action sequence. That’s something that was sorely missing from the first film. Explosions are better when they actually explode.

0:53 – 1:00: They have to lock away Snake Eyes because you just can’t kill that mofo.

1:01 – 1:05: Ray Stevenson, too! They’re really bringing out the big guns for this one.

1:06 – 1:14: So… everybody died except those three? That means little-to-no Channing Tatum, right? Umm…awesome.

1:15 – 1:22: This is a good way to go about it, I think. There were so many characters in the first film that none of them really got to do a whole lot. Scaling back the characters will help. And casting The Rock as Roadblock was a pretty damn inspired choice.

1:23 – 1:27: More Storm Shadow. What did I say earlier about ninjas?

1:28 – 1:33: Okay, that’s pretty dumb, actually, with the Cobra flags and the White House.

1:34 – 1:39: You GODDAMN right, it ain’t!

1:40 – 1:41: …ninjas…

1:42 – 1:47: See? This is what we want! Actual G.I. Joe-looking stuff. Guns and explosions and camo and shit.

1:48 – 1:54: And they’re really hammering home the whole ninja thing. We get it, man. Ninjas are cool.

1:55 – 1:57: I pride myself in being neither sexist nor misogynistic, but I may have suggestively whistled. I’m only a man; don’t judge me.

1:58 – 2:03: All right, there’s still lots of time left in the trailer but I think it’s safe to say I’m on board. Not much else can be done to convince me further, I think.

2:04 – 2:18: We have ninjas fighting while repelling off a fucking mountain. There are no words… just… awesome.

2:19 – 2:24: Decent title. Way better than The Rise of Cobra. Really tired of things “rising” in movie titles. Apes, Batman, Silver Surfers… quit rising, will ya? Interesting version of “Seven Nation Army” as well.

2:25 – 2:28: Who could they possibly trust?…

2:29 – 2:34: Get the fuck OUT!

2:35 – 2:42: Of course! Who else could they possibly get to play the JOE of G.I. Joe?

That looks heaps and gobs better than the first film. And as much as I like Christopher Eccleston and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, I’m glad this movie looks to be devoid of both Destro and Cobra Commander.

-Kanderson likes paying money to see entertaining movies. Follow him on TWITTER.

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19 comments

  • Cobra Commander is in this, I doubt JGL is back to play him but he is in the trailer @ 1.01 standing next to Rey Stevenson. Well i assume thats Cobra Commander

  • Wow, this shows far greater promise. I’m curious who The Rock and Bruce Willis are. I don’t like them killing like every Joe but we’ll see how it works. I hold out hope. :-)

  • I was hooked when I saw Snake Eyes no longer had that ridiculous looking ‘lips’ mask. But, throwing in The Rock as Roadblock and Bruce Willis as the the first G.I. Joe, General Joseph Colton, that pretty much grabbed me by the shirt, shook me vigorously and screamed in my face ‘YOU WILL WATCH THIS MOVIE!!!’.

    And so I shall…..

  • If you look on IDMB under full cast it lists “someone” playing “cobra” but it does not say cobra commander? So that is left up to interpetation n as if Cobra Commander is in the film. However there is no way Zartan could head up “Cobra” by himself and nor would he. That trailer left too many questions but that what makes a good teaser right?….cannot wait for this one…YO JOE!!!!!

  • I was intrigued and impressed with everything BUT the repelling ninjas. Oy.

    Srsly, they have a mini ninja army and they depict them fighting while their movement is restricted? I appreciate that it’s a different approach but the shot didn’t even include any interesting angles and the contact between sword and bad-dude looked like shit. If they try something new they need to go all the way. Unsatisfying.

  • That’s not Zartan at 1:01. Ray Stevenson is playing Firefly. Arnold Vosloo, who seems to be missing from the trailer, is playing Zartan. I guess that could be who’s behind the mask.

  • RZA is playing the Blind Master which is simply whacked. Good whacked, bad whacked? I dunno, but it is whacked. Jinx is a fun addition. Will miss some of the iconic characters that haven’t already been used or wrecked by the first movie… I know Willis is bald but if he is playing the original G.I. Joe, couldn’t he muster up a beard to go with his kung-fu grip?

    Still I am interested in seeing more…

  • 1. The repelling ninjas… I like the creativity and over-the-top ninjaness of it, but I keep thinking “why not just cut the other guy’s rope?” I’m sure they’ll explain it.

    2. I love the Cobra White House. It’s a dumb as Independence Day, but it just strikes me at a really stupid level that it works. It’s like when the Emperor is killed in Star Wars and and the entire Imperial Fleet gives up. Sure, why not: Joe’s dead, Cobra’s president and American Idol is on. It works.