Movie Review: Rampage

Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Naomie Harris, Malin Åkerman, Jake Lacy, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Joe Manganiello. Directed by Brad Peyton

THIS IS NOT SPOILER FREE.

When was the last time you saw a giant Gorilla terrorize a city? I know, not too long, right? When was the last time you saw a giant sea creature, bigger than its normal size, destroy half a city? I know, y’all even tired of it.

Okay, when was the last time you saw Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson save a seemingly dead franchise? Uhm, don’t say it, I know: Half of all the blockbusters in the last decade.

The point is, this is nothing new. They didn’t even shift from the usual rhetoric of the military attacking creatures blindly and only one man, the protagonist, has enough sense to do the right thing and he risks his life for it. Yes, but when was the last time you saw a flying wolf???? Never.

You see, it’s just like trying to cook simple Nigerian white rice. There are only a handful ways to make the dish and you know that but you wanna be different today so you wear an Apron and add a little groundnut oil. It’s still white rice. But it tastes and looks slightly different.

With Rampage, the bar wasn’t raised. And there was /contingency;/ one that was decided by just one man in a military uniform. I mean, where’s the president? Where’s the Governor of Chicago? You’re going to drop the Mother Of All Bombs (MOAB) just like that? How are you even sure it’s gonna kill them?

Speaking of killing, remember that scene in the third act? Who can forget a gorilla swallowing a woman alive? You know it happened in slow motion, right? Which means I had enough time to say “No, that is wrong” six freaking times because that was the wrongest(i know there’s no such word) blunder committed in beast-against-man film history. (Except this was a homage to a famous scene in the video game it was slightly adapted from but wtf?)

They had a cure for a Gorilla’s state of outrage. They didn’t know how to give it to him. So they put it in a woman’s bag and somehow the Gorilla swallowed her.

This is the same Gorilla that has killed dozens of people the way Gorillas do without eating anyone. He has dinosaur-sized feet. His palm can squeeze a car like I’ll squeeze a drink can. But he chose to eat the lady. Why? No one behind those computers making the effects saw how wrong this was for watchers who haven’t played the damn video game? I’m not even bringing in the fact that Gorillas are vegetarians — yeah, that’s what my friend said. But what really happens in a Gorilla’s belly?

The cure wasn’t powder. It had to be injected. It had a strong plastic casing. My knowledge of swallowing means you either suffocated or you’re eaten in pieces before swallowing for easy digestion. How can Davis live with the fact that his Gorilla buddy is carrying a beautiful woman in his belly? (Well he ran around for half an hour with a bullet in his belly, no wahala.¹) Point? GORILLAS DO NOT EAT PEOPLE.

That was utterly wrong. And disgraceful. I can think of a million ways to give him the cure. What happened to Davis risking his life to save his friend, uhn? How about just
providing him a gun to shoot the cure with? You can kill the evil witch whatever way you like. That’s easy.

One rule I still scream out whenever i get the chance to: Never remind us it’s fiction. *spits*

That’s about the things that went wrong but they were surprisingly not wrong enough to stop Rampage from smashing the box office with $426.2 million.

The characters weren’t overpriced: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson plays Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, thank you very much.

Naomie Harris plays the female sidekick that would always get in the way if I had written the script(I’m still aspiring) and Jeffrey Dean Morgan manages to, as hard as it is, steal the show in a movie with The Rock front and center.

As Dwayne pointed out at the movie’s premiere, the stars of Rampage are the creatures: Albino King-Kong(ah ah, i see why they didn’t make him dark), The Wolf with wings/fins/attached feathers/wtf, and Cro Cro named Lizzie.

If for anything, the visual effects is cleaner than Dwayne’s shaved head. The creatures weren’t original but were uniquely distinct from everything we’ve seen and characteristically separated. Each dialogue mattered to the plot and in an hour and half, every redundancies that accompanies[ed] the genre were deftly avoided. But a gorilla swallowed a lady. I’ll never forget that.

Okiki rates it 6.5/10.

Glossary
¹ No Wahala literally means ‘No problem’ and technically means, ‘it’s all good.’ It is sweet Pidgin-English from the streets of Nigeria.

Okiki Adeduyite

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