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March 28, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

G.I. Joe: Retaliation is the sort of film studio execs refer to as critic-proof. They dutifully arrange press screenings of the movie with the full knowledge that the reviews will be dreadful but won’t make a dent in attendance. The critics have not disappointed. For the most part, their reviews are scathing. Writes Peter Howell in the Toronto Star. “G.I. Joe: Retaliation is a case of ADHD masquerading as a movie, hiding behind incoherent directing, writing and editing.” Rafer Guzmán in Newsday calls the screenplay “a disastrous mess.” He, too, uses the term “incoherent” to describe it. To Richard Roeper at the Chicago Sun-Times, it’s a “ridiculous and overblown debacle.” The movie reminds Liam Lacey of the Toronto Globe and Mail of “a five-year-old with a megaphone, excitedly yelling about his latest bulldozer-soldier-dinosaur smash-kill-squash-everything game.” Joe Neumaier in the New York Daily News gives it a rather mild going-over, calling it “bland,” “bombastic,” and “silly.” Noting that no one expects much from any movie based on 50-year-old Hasbro action figures, Neumaier remarks, “Just because it originated with plastic doesn’t mean it has to feel like that.” Scott Bowles in USA Today actually pays it a left-handed compliment, remarking that Retaliation “marks a vast improvement” over its predecessor, The Rise of Cobra. However, he notes, that film “earned some of the harshest reviews of 2009.” And Kyle Smith in the New York Post remarks that while Cobra amounted to “a G.I. joke,” the new film “has enough hoo-ah to bring a satisfying blast of blockbustery summer to dreary March.”