“G.I. Joe: Retaliation”, the sequel to 2009’s action film “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra”, released on DVD and Blu-ray on July 30.
“G.I. Joe: Retaliation” is a pleasant surprise after its 2009 predecessor with new characters, less cartoon violence, and a polished up storyline.
The film follows the plot of the last installment with Duke (Channing Tatum) being given his own team of Joes just in time for the G.I. Joe team to be framed for crimes against the country, forcing them to disband. The surviving team members, including Roadblock (Dwayne Johnson), Flint (D.J. Cotrona), and Lady Jaye (Adrianne Palicki), fight Cobra Command and the world leaders under Cobra Commander’s influence.
“Justin Bieber: Never Say Never” director Jon Chu was brought in for the film along with “Zombieland” writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. Chu and Reese were G.I. Joe fans beforehand, and it really comes through in the film. “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” brings the franchise back to its roots and away from the gimmicks and cocky humor.
An ensemble cast also added to the new style with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Bruce Willis being introduced and Channing Tatum, Ray Park, Jonathan Pryce and Byung-hun Lee reprising their previous roles. Johnson led the way playing his role in his usual likeable way while still being the action hero that he is – a perfect choice for a lead actor here.
In the end, this is one of those times the sequel is better than the first. Still a popcorn movie, but an entertaining one that will please G.I. Joe fans across the board with its more realistic approach that sticks to the core with no power suits and a more team-based G.I. Joe.
“G.I. Joe: Retaliation” has a run time of approximately 110 minutes, and is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of combat violence and martial arts action throughout, and for brief sensuality and language.
Available on DVD and Blu-ray, the Blu-ray features a 1080p/AVC-encoded presentation in 2.39:1 aspect ratio. “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” is as close to perfect in the visual department as a release could be. Details, colors, and blacks are extremely accurate outside of the intentional stylized color tints. Other unwanted imperfections are not seen on this transfer.
The Blu-ray comes with the best you’ll get today – lossless Dolby TrueHD 7.1 surround sound. As an action film, the soundtrack literally explodes scene after scene with dialogue heard clearly in the center. Each of the seven channels are utilized in a very satisfying way.
The single-disc DVD release does not come with any extras.
The Blu-ray/DVD combo pack and the Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD combo pack includes one commentary track. The bonus features include:
- Commentary with Director Jon M. Chu and Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura
- Deleted scenes
- Mission Briefing
- Two Ninjas
- The Desert Attack
- COBRA Strikes
- The Lone Soldiers
- The Monastery
- Fort Sumter
“G.I. Joe: Retaliation” is a pure action movie full of explosions and shooting, but it is not so over the top that it is unentertaining. A huge step up from its 2009 predecessor, this one is worth giving a chance despite the previous failure.
Buy G.I. Joe: Retaliation DVD
Buy G.I. Joe: Retaliation Blu-ray
Buy G.I. Joe: Retaliation 3D Blu-ray
Follow me on Twitter or subscribe to this column at the top of the page to keep up on all future news, reviews, interviews and giveaways.