Stephen Sommers | 2009 | 116 min | USA
McCullen, the latest generation from a long line of weapons dealers (the film's opening shows us that it's been the family trade since at least the 1600s) has developed a deadly new weapon with NATO funding, and plans to steal it back in order to take over the world. Thankfully for the world, an elite group of soldiers called G.I. Joe have taken it upon themselves to stop him and his gang of baddies.
The good guys are (cheer)led by General Hawk, as phoned in by Dennis Quaid. He doesn't once leave G.I. Joe HQ, and is injured early on so that the laziness of his performance can be helped along through the use of a wheelchair and later a cane. The rest of the featured "Joe" team is Duke, Ripcord, Snake Eyes, Scarlet, and a couple of other dudes whose names I just looked up and discovered to be Heavy Duty and Breaker. So it's the usual variety of characters. A couple tough guys, the wiseass, a ninja, a hot girl, and a nerd.
The bad guys, lead by McCullen, are the Baroness, Storm Shadow, Zartan, numerous armoured soldiers who've been injected with a fear and pain inhibitor, and a masked scientist who created the deadly weapon they're trying to steal. So... Smarmy leader, babe, tough guys, ninja, and nerd.
Filled with connected backstories, many of each team conveniently alrady have some sort of history with each other which is told through fairly entertaining flashbacks. The best being a fight between Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow as children in Japan.
The film moves along at a good pace, never dragged down by it's sometimes hilariously convoluted story. Most of the film's performances are fun for the type of movie GIJ:TROC is, and Stephen Sommers has made sure that the type of movie is a big dumb summer movie with lots of fighting, destruction, fancy vehicles, good looking people who are relatively likeable, and an ending that sets up a sequel. I'm looking forward to that sequel.