So Expendables 3 is another film in the series of Old (and semi-old) action stars ganging together to fight in whatever plot they decide to hang loosely on the flick. As usual, some of the stars get short-changed (looking at you Jet Li… again), others are the real stars (hey Stallone!), and various other characters just vanish for weird plot reasons to bring in other (younger) characters (three interchangeable guys and a female MMA fighter who can fight but not so great with the acting).
Speaking of acting, Mel Gibson is the bad guy and pretty much schools all the muscle heads in how to act. And Antonio Banderas is in it in a truly perplexing role (kind of winning but certainly weird). Wesley Snipes is in there too… and he has to be broken out of prison which is a pretty good in-joke (and there are a few other self-referential jokes but not nearly as many as I’d expect). Harrison Ford is here, replacing Bruce Willis over salary disagreements (Ford says Willis’ character is “out of the picture” which is a joke).
The first third of the movie is ok… pretty much the usual stuff for this series, the middle section was kind of boring, and the final action set piece was genuinely pretty fun and it looked great. The end action set piece really saves the movie and might be the best thing in all three of these movies.