Following a hiatus of more than nine years, “The Expendables” returns with its latest installment, “Expend4ables,” in an attempt to make up for the poorly received youth-focused third film. However, the movie’s flimsy and threadbare script makes it feel more appropriate to be called “The Disposables.” The 2010 original movie was created as a full-employment act for older action stars and had a refreshing feel, given Hollywood’s tendency to overlook aging actors. Nevertheless, the current installment falls short of expectations, with a simple plot involving a villainous character (Iko Uwais) stealing a nuclear weapon, leading the team of old warhorses to come together once again, directed by a government operative played by Andy Garcia. While Barney (Sylvester Stallone) remains the leader, there is now a significant bond between him and Lee (Jason Statham), with the latter taking over as the action centerpiece after his recent starring role in “The Meg” sequel. Despite the efforts to create a successful fourth movie in the franchise, “Expend4ables” lacks substance and depth.
The movie “Expendables 4” features Lee, a deadly character played by Jason Statham, who engages in a form of foreplay with his equally lethal girlfriend Gina, portrayed by Megan Fox. The film includes a mix of familiar and new faces, such as Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Tony Jaa, Jacob Scipio, and Levy Tran, although some of these characters barely make an impression. Rated R, the movie has a high body count, but the action sequences are somewhat generic. The concept of exploring the impact of gravity on aging action stars was part of the initial appeal, as was the inclusion of well-known actors, some of whom chose to sit out this mission. Despite the franchise’s name recognition and easy formula for adding new players, “Expendables 4” falls short in several ways and in all the wrong places. The film is set to premiere on September 22 in US theaters.