Filming continues for Amazing Spider-Man 2. Andrew Garfield and Emma stone were snapped on the set.
Review: The Expendables 2
Release date: 17 August 2012
Director: Simon West
Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jean-Claude Van Damme
What's the story?
When a mission results in one of his unit buying the farm, soldier for hire Barney Ross (Stallone) resolves to get payback on the plutonium-pilfering bad guy responsible (Van Damme).
What did we think?
What slim fun one might derive from watching washed-up has-beens dragged out of retirement got used up two years ago in the original Expendables. All that remains is the depressing sight of a grizzled cast resembling shadows of their former selves in a sequel that takes itself way too seriously.
Yin Yang, Toll Road, Hale Caesar: yes, the ageing muscle men that make up Sylvester Stallone's merry mercenaries sure have stupid names. Sadly, their dopey nomenclature is far from the silliest thing on show in a grim follow-up to Sly's 2010 hit that couldn't be more sluggish with a busted Zimmer frame.
Where the Rocky man was content to parody his tough-guy image in the self-directed original, the addition of some other stars without any sense of humour - step forward Jean-Claude Van Damme and Chuck Norris of Delta Force fame - robs Simon West's sequel of what would otherwise be its sole saving grace. Having Hunger Games hunk Liam Hemsworth as Sylvester's surrogate son, meanwhile, drearily invites the kind of inevitable plot development that would be crass even without the parallel to the star's own recent bereavement.
Yet where The Expendables 2 really falls down in on the action front, Sly's pursuit of JCVD quickly degenerating into one dull, interminable shoot-out. Small wonder Jet Li withdraws early as the film's cynical sop to the Chinese market - though that could be down to Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger's tiresome double act in a pic that's little more than a Planet Hollywood reunion.
Verdict: Corned beefcake.