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The Marine (Unrated)
DVD disk
01.29.2007 By: Jason Adams
The Marine (Unrated) order
Director:
John Bonito

Actors:
John Cena
Robert Patrick
Kelly Carlson

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
When his smokin’ hot wife is taken hostage by a gang of jewel thieves, an ex-Marine must use all his training and his magical Cloak of Invincibility to track down the bad guys and get her back.

What do you mean he doesn’t have a Cloak of Invincibility? But…all those bullets…and the fireballs…how…?
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
I’m embarrassed to admit that when I saw the trailer for THE MARINE last year, I thought it actually looked somewhat fun. It was a WWE movie, sure, but it promised big fights, bigger explosions, a villainous Robert Patrick, and Kelly Carlson in stages of undress. All I was hoping for was a harmless throwback to 80s action movies. That hope has subsequently been beaten, anally violated and shot.

It’s truly amazing how stupid this movie is—the plot, the characters, any form of logic. In fact, there are times when you won’t believe what you’re watching actually exists in a fair and just world. I’m not a professional screenwriter, but I can’t even fathom how somebody can sit down and write dialogue like this unless they do it on purpose. Example: “Cops! I hate cops! [pause] And rock candy.” And that’s not just a terrible non-sequitur; there’s actually a recurring character subplot involving rock candy, racism and male rape. Just let that sink in for a moment. THE MARINE is not supposed to be a comedy.

There was a fleeting second when John Cena evades certain death for the 467th time and a character makes a reference to THE TERMINATOR that made me think maybe, just maybe, THE MARINE was a brilliant, self-aware deconstruction of the action genre. That theory was quickly shot down. The film lazily hits each requisite cliché repeatedly (from automatic weapons missing at point blank range to the hero diving unscathed from nuclear-size explosions) and not doing a particularly good job of it. If you were looking for some exciting mindless action, I’m afraid there’s nothing special here.

I feel bad for Robert Patrick, who’s actually pretty fun as an over-the-top psychopath in spite of what he’s given. (Get a new agent, dude!) As for Cena, he’s not as naturally charismatic as The Rock, but I could see him as a decent action star if given the right material.

Lastly, if you’re curious about the extra violence or sex in this Unrated Cut, I’m sorry to say it’s still very PG-13. There’s about 30 seconds of new footage and none of it involves Kelly Carlson and baby oil.
THE EXTRAS
You know a DVD is struggling in the Extras department when the back cover lists the individual commercials by name.

The Making of THE MARINE (11:28): Pretty much what the title implies; a look at the production interspersed with interviews with cast and crew. A bit too heavy on the self-promotion, especially whenever Vince McMahon speaks.

World Premiere at Camp Pendleton (2:37): It was nice of the WWE to have the first official screening at the San Diego marine base. It was even nicer of them to bring Kelly Carlson along to tease the thousands of pent up, horny males.

John Cena Features (15:27): Four featurettes covering Cena’s wrestling career, his preparation for the movie in a Marine basic training camp, as well as his day off playing golf. He seems like a nice enough guy, mostly just grateful for his chance at stardom. Anybody who body slams Kevin Federline is okay in my book.

WWE Promotional Features (14:38): Ten commercials geared toward the WWE audience.

A handful of Previews round out the disc. It’s ironic that they include a trailer for COMMANDO, considering THE MARINE is essentially a mentally challenged remake of that movie.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
I was originally going to turn this review in to a “Flabbergastingly Stupid Moments in THE MARINE” Drinking Game, but I didn’t want to be held liable for the mass liver failure caused by participants chugging Jack Daniels for 92 minutes straight. Even if you like wrestling or John Cena, I still wouldn’t recommend this movie. You can leave your brain at the door when you watch it, but your empty skull will still ache with suck.

Extra Tidbit: I was shocked to see Don Davis of THE MATRIX fame did the score for this movie, mostly because it is downright laughable in spots. This includes a terrible LORD OF THE RINGS-style love theme and a random porn groove that plays while two men have a casual conversation in a car.
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