One of the advantages of working at a facility with an IMAX theater is that I get a discount on tickets. So anytime a movie comes that I think Chris and I might enjoy I give him the option to go. And then we go about half the time. But then there are those films that I start talking about as soon as we confirm the contract and drag Chris despite his skepticism because I only get the discount on two tickets (I know, it's a weird loophole). GI Joe: Retaliation? One of those movies. Chris and I were dating when the first GI Joe film came out. It was the day before we each started different graduate schools and so we decided to check out the movies. He hated it. More than when I drug him to see Transformers 2 at midnight. Just convincing him to go to the theater last night involved bribes including lots of popcorn and gummy bears. So there we were -- Chris expecting to hate the movie, me hoping to get some knitting accomplished. And we actually both enjoyed it.
Let me say, this is not a deep, meaningful film. If you are looking for that you probably should not watch a movie based off a toy line. But if you want a film that is visually stunning, full of action, has a lot of heart, and is just this side of campy, this is one you should check out. I liked the last GI Joe, but I have never successfully rewatched it. This one I may actually try to see in the theater a second time. The visuals were great, both of the hot men and their fight sequences. Most of the impressive vistas were previewed in the trailers, but that does not diminish their effect. I've seen many films in IMAX in my two years there and the best I can compare it to visually is Mission Impossible: 4. And that wasn't even in 3D. I especially loved how the cinematography in the cities focused on smoke and pollution, symbolizing the rotting within.
For me the best part of the movie was the acting. Not necessarily the quality of the acting, but the way that the actors clearly did not take themselves too seriously. The interplay of Channing Tatum and The Rock was completely believable and the overdramatized dialogue of the ninjas was sparing enough not to pull you out of the experience to realize just how ridiculous the premise of a movie about a man covered in nanobots impersonating the president. I did call a specific plot point based on the trailer, but it actually did not diminish the experience for me.
Overall, if you are suffering from cold-induced cabin fever and are looking for a good popcorn flick, check this one out. It is particularly good for knitting because a lot of the action actually takes place in daylight, unlike a lot of films these days.
I had one row of my Drizzle on the needles when I got to the theater and knit two inches by the time we were done. Considering I spent a lot of time staring at the screen with my knitting in my lap, I think that was pretty good progress.