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Headscratchers / The Expendables

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  • Why did they allow Gunner (Dolph's character) back into the group at the end? I mean, he betrayed them to the enemy and tried to kill Jet's character, but at the end he was just chilling with them like nothing happened.
    • Because they understand that he went evil due to a PTSD-induced psychotic break and that it could happen to any of them? They do imply he's now in therapy.
      • Also, he was on drugs. " Gunnar you're using again." Note how it wasn't a question.
      • Gunnar has been shot in the chest and he looks HEALTHIER at the end of the movie than in the beginning. Tell me he wasn't in a BAD PLACE before.
  • Other than it being an 80s movie trope and therefore, had to be present: Why the screaming blue hell did Munroe and Paine drag Sandra along with them when made their escape? Had they just ditched her and ran, the probably escape with room to spare.
    • Because if you've got a hostage, the heroes will hesitate to shoot you. If you don't, they'll open fire soon as they can see you. Also remember that Munroe didn't know that Ross was there for the girl. He thought The Expendables were just there to kill him, personally. If he knew that bringing Sandra along as a hostage would only encourage Ross to follow, he'd have just let her go when he made his escape.
  • And frankly, you could fill half a page with questions about Sandra: Why didn't Garza have her shipped off to a convent somewhere? Why didn't she leave with Ross and Christmas when she had the chance? Why did she stop Garza from killing Munroe? Just... WHY SO STUPID?!?
    • He probably didn't have her shipped off because he still hoped for some sort of reconciliation, and also because where she was, he could keep an eye on her. She didn't leave because she didn't want to abandon her cause there. I don't remember well enough why she stopped Garza from killing Munroe.
    • She probably stopped him from killing Munroe because she knows that Munroe would have murdered him right there.
      • Except the only backup Munroe had in that scene was Paine. Neither of them get off a shot if Garza follows through. So we're right back to "Why?"
      • If Garza follows through, Munroe is going to kill him. Somehow. Paine would kill Garza, or Munroe would suddenly prove too quick for Garza, or something.
      • Because she's a nice, peaceful girl who is invoking If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him.
  • There was barely any specialization between the characters. Everything was either an Informed Ability or All On The Website. Jason Statham's character is a Knife Nut, but he barely gets to use them. Jet Li's character is supposed to be the best martial artist, and yet he can't beat Dolph Lundgren (admittedly, size does matter). Terry Crews likes big guns... and so does everyone else in the movie. The whole point of teamwork is that no one person is an expert in everything. That is why you have different people do what works for them.
    • Possibly due to scripting. There wasn't much opportunity for them to show off anything other than basic stealth warfare and basic squad warfare. Sure there was a fight here and there but we expect that. Still, it would've been nice if the fight between Li and Lundgren had been more involved. Possibly with Li trying to, for example, attack Lundgren's KNEES or something. Since that would be how a martial artist would try to fight a guy who was two feet taller than him.
    • I'm curious as to how much imput the actors had in those fights; I wouldn't be surprised if you were to ask Jet Li, he'd say Lundgren could take him in an actual fight(Lundgren being an accomplished martial artist himself in addition to the size difference), so they might have wanted the fight to reflect that. All speculation on my part, though.
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    • Did we watch the same movie? Because Jason Statham was using knives constantly, and Terry Crews was consistently using the largest and most powerful weapons in the movie.
    • Possibly just due to how many characters there are to begin with. After all, you can make entire movies based around the talents of just one of these guys.
    • No, there was plenty of specialization, especially noticeable in the tunnel fight, where you can see everyone's fighting style shown quiete clearly. Yin Yang uses lots of quick, close-quarters strikes and some grappling. Toll Road uses MMA takedowns, throws, arm-breaks, and suplexes. Christmas uses knives. Barney is a brawler. Hale Caesar uses the goddamned AA12. This specialization carries over into the larger battle outside, but with more ranged combat: Yin Yang is speedy and maneuverable and is constantly hitting targets on the flanks and using quick, accurate reaction fire against enemy soldiers. Barney uses pistols more than he uses his rifle. Christmas is a close-quarters fighter using his pistol and knives. Hale Caesar uses the goddamn AA12. Only Toll doesn't have a ranged specialty; he's just a rifleman who finds a nice target to MMA the shit out of.
    • How much specialization do you want? Last I heard, actual soldiers are pretty big on standardization - not many knife throwers, kung-fu masters, or quick-draw pistoleros in any military unit I know of. It's acceptable in the movie, because these guys are basically superheroes, but any real-life CO would have broken Barney, Christmas, and Yang of their "pistols, knives, and bare hands" fixations long ago... if they lived long enough.
      • What "fixations" are we talking about here? These aren't fixations, these are skills that these characters have. They still rely on their rifles or other primary weapons, but when they end up either out off ammo or in melee, then their specific skills come out.
    • A problem I see towards the specialization is that all the squadmembers are good in everything, so we have a team in which more or less everybody is great with guns, great with knifes and great in hand-to-hand. The only difference comes from the customization of their approaches: some use big guns, others small guns, some prefer throwing knifes while other use giant bowies... But most of them are too badass individually to suffer from Crippling Overspecialization as would be a sign of specialization.
  • Why was it wrong that Lacy went looking for someone else if Christmas was the one who disappeared all the time and didn't tell her about his life?
    • Where's it say she was wrong to do that?
    • The rest of the team is even pretty ambivalent about it, implying that it was Christmas' fault. I really didn't see the movie even vaguely implying she was wrong; I think you're reading too much into it.
    • Because she didn't send him so much as a text message to tell him it was over? If she wants to move on that's fine, but you let the other person know you're done. Jeez. Her insistence that he "has to understand" also kills a lot of viewer sympathy.
    • It seems to me like neither one was in the right - in the sequel, their relationship (what little we see of it, anyway) seems to be working out this time around because they actually communicate and Lee's more open with Lacy about his life.
    • Indeed. The films do villify her for cheating on him, but there is no particular animosity toward her for seeking out a healthier relationship.
    • Let's not lose sight of the fact that, while Lee wasn't a very attentive boyfriend, Lacy did technically cheat on him. Granted he basically drove her to it, but still.
  • What was up with that "Mumbo Jumbo" song they sing in both movies? I'm assuming there's some meaning behind it, but I can't figure out what it is.
    • It is based off the poem "Congo" by Vachel Lindsay.
  • One question relating to the sequel: Where were the airport security when Vilain and his cronies came into the airport fully armed and with civilians running, shouldn't there have been cops ready to retaliate?
    • This isn't a western airport. This is an East European airport where the entire country is effectively controlled by the Sangs. The airport "security" are likely the very Sangs that the Expendables are shooting at.
      • If I recall, weren't they in Russia, since the base the Expendables were hiding was an old Soviet base.
      • No. They were in the Balkans.
      • The Soviet Union was quite a bit bigger than current day Russia, so there's a lot of old bases left elsewhere.
  • Why was Church angry about The Expendables killing Garza and Munroe? Wasn't that what he hired them to do?
    • They were hired to kill Garza specifically; while killing Munroe was a good thing, Church never outright told them to do it, so he used it as an excuse to force the Expendables into getting back the contents of the crashed plane.
  • During the seaplane escape at the beginning of the second movie, they've got at least half a mile of water after getting past the boat blockade, there's no wind to speak of, and the river is easily a quarter-mile wide, yet they just have to aim the plane at the one tiny part of the dam that's 50-60 feet taller than the rest (and notably, that one part isn't much wider than their airplane)?
    • And granted, "just clearing the obstacle on takeoff" is an action-movie cliche, but then, so is "going off the cliff at the end of the runway, and taking a couple of seconds to pop back into view and climb into the sky".

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