R (strong bloody violence throughout); 102 min.
The Expendables 2 is a Road Runner cartoon for the bloody-minded, a wise-cracking cavalcade of carnage that hurls bullet-proof heroes at the villains, defies the laws of physics and treats us to so much bloodshed that it's only natural that some of it should spatter on the lens.
Irresponsible as a first-person shooter video game? You bet. But it holds together, more or less, right up to the moment Chuck Norris and his dyed beard make their preposterous appearance. It's a moment that lowers the bar on stupid for the rest of the picture.
Sly Stallone and his team bring their soldier-for-hire thing to Nepal, Albania and environs this time around. There's a debt to be paid -- to the spy boss played by Bruce Willis, one more assignment for "your little gang of psychotic mutts."
These expendable mercenaries -- Stallone, Jason Statham, Terry Crews, Randy Couture, the redeemed Dolph Lundgren, the absent (better things to do, he checks out early) Jet Li -- avenge their own. Liam Hemsworth is a sniper. Maggie (Nan Yu) is the Chinese "weapons-proficient" expert brought along for the ride.
-- Roger Moore, McClatchy Tribune News Service