Had an action movie day:
Hero (2002) - 7/10
The swordplay is excellent and the visuals are just gorgeous
- tons of scenery porn and great use of colour. The plot itself is actually pretty dull, but I would recommend this solely for the eye candy.
Universal Soldier (1992) - 5/10
The first half - maybe third - is just perfect. Van Damme and Lundgren being awesome. But then it kinda gets lost in typical "90s action film" shit for the most part. (You know, the kind of nonsense that nearly every popular action movie ripped off from Terminator 2 for a while, even though those things only really worked IN Terminator 2 (Eg. Random comedy moments, the scene where the cold-hearted protagonist tries to learn EMOTIONS~ and the annoying yet reluctant sidekick (in this case, a particularly irritating female reporter (Just imagine every single movie female reporter ever and try not to fucking rage) (But actually, she probably wasn't as annoying as Edward Furlong and his hip early-90s slang and shitty haircut (Fuck that character))))) But it gets awesome again towards the end.
Iron Man 2 (2010) - 2/10
Oooooh fuck, I mad.
Let's face it, it was almost the exact same film as the first one - only less engaging and way more obnoxious. They didn't even try to build Mickey Rourke's stereotype or Justin "annoying child" Hammer guy into credible villains at all. And speaking of the characters, there really weren't much likeable ones to be found at all - mostly vapid douchebags. I mean, literally every single actor in this film was either misused or underused, including Robert Downey Jr.
Too much talking, too little action sequences, (they were decent, but there's only like, what, two of them?) wooden dialogue, corny jokes, dead-end subplots, a confused capitalist/military/anti-government message, not as quirky as the original and - finally - it had some seriously boring and uninspired soundtrack choices. (Who uses Highway to Hell these days? Honestly? Using AC/DC as film music needs to become deader than disco)
The visuals and CGI were really impressive though - so they should keep Matthew Libatique (cinematographer) around, but they really need to fire Jon Favreaux's (director) ass and reject any of Justin Theroux's scripts for Iron Man 3.