Weekend Movie Guide: ‘The Expendables’ Will Blow You Up For A Third Time

Opening Everywhere: The Expendables 3, Let’s Be Cops, The Giver

Opening Somewhere: Frank, Life After Beth

FilmDrunk Suggests: Check out Vince’s review of Life After Beth, while I go cut a hole in the bottom of my popcorn bucket with my Rambo knife. It’s Expendables time!

The Expendables 3

Rotten Tomatoes Scores: 36% critics, 53% audience

Gratuitous Review Quotes:

The Expendables 3, trading on our affection for action stars of the past, has officially worn out its already shaky welcome. – Peter Travers, Rolling Stone

Those first two movies look like Seven Samurai next to The Expendables 3, a sad, bad, parade of uninspired cameos and listless violence. – Bilge Ebiri, Vulture

Armchair Analysis: I enjoy these movies. They’re stupid and I love them for it. Critics who walk into this movie expecting more than what they’re describing for the sake of filling a word count can sit in a Dutch oven, for all I care.

Let’s Be Cops (Opened Wednesday)

Rotten Tomatoes Scores: 9% critics, 64% audience

Gratuitous Review Quotes:

“You’ve been watching too many movies,” says a detective (Andy Garcia) during an interrogation in “Let’s Be Cops.” The same could be said for the filmmakers, who hit predictable beats in this disposable comedy. – Andy Webster, New York Times

None of this is as riotously zany as it wants to be. – Tom Russo, Boston Globe

Armchair Analysis: This movie looks like it would have killed in 1983.

The Giver

Rotten Tomatoes Scores: 29% critics, 68% audience

Gratuitous Review Quotes:

Another week, another movie about a special adolescent who saves society from the forces of darkness. – Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail

Noyce, working from an adaptation by screenwriters Michael Mitnick and Robert B. Weide, finds a compelling through-line … – Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer

Armchair Analysis: I have barely heard anything about this movie, and I certainly had no clue it was opening today. That can’t be good.


Rotten Tomatoes Scores: 90% critics, 78% audience

Gratuitous Review Quotes:

Bat-dung crazy, in a good way, Lenny Abrahamson’s Frank is the story of a pop star who really lets his art go to his head. – Peter Howell, Toronto Star

It’s not going anywhere terribly important and is in no hurry to get there, but “Frank” is an accumulation of memorably offbeat moments, like an album made up of B sides and lost demo tracks that you stumble across and can’t stop replaying. – A.O. Scott, New York Times

Armchair Analysis: I enjoyed Michael Fassbender’s musical performance on The Colbert Report, but I’m not positive that this is my cup of tea. Unless maybe if Frank is the worst and creepiest college mascot ever, in which case that would be pretty cool.

Life After Beth

Rotten Tomatoes Scores: 42% critics, 54% audience

Gratuitous Review Quotes:

“Life After Beth” gets into the well-tread zombie-comedy territory in a clever and inspired way. Then it doesn’t get out of it nearly so skillfully. – Christy Lemire, RogerEbert.com

Seasoned actors are left to yell pointlessly at one another, while Beth and the zombie angle slowly decompose. – Jeannette Catsoulis, New York Times

Armchair Analysis: I’ve never really been able to commit to an opinion regarding Aubrey Plaza, because while I like Parks and Recreation enough, April can get really annoying. And then there’s the strange behavior on talk shows and at the MTV Movie Awards, as well as the obsession with Chris Bosh, and she’s just a very unique individual. I don’t know, jury’s out, I guess.