Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Sunbow's GI Joe: The Movie (1986)

(Sorry this is late. I had something come up last night.)

If I told you that movie had:

A secret tropical hideaway hidden under an arctic mountain;
A Broadcast Energy Transmitter that could beam energy from the ground to any spot on Earth or even into space;
Man eating plants;
Guns that shot not bullets or even lasers but tentacles;
Deadly spores capable of causing humans to devolve into animals;
An important character that slowly turned into a snake;
and another important character created in a lab using the DNA of various military leaders, would you consider it to be SF?

If other characters could pull tentacle monsters our of nowhere and use them as weapons to smother their enemies and there was a half man/half snake centauroid as another important character would you consider it to have a fantasy element?

Good! I'm glad you agree that this is indeed a SF/F movie. Seriously. GI Joe: The Movie is part of the genre I love. There's more genre related goodness in this flick than in a lot of the stuff I've reviewed here.

The story revolves around a group of new recruits. Law (with his dog Order), Jinx, Lieutenant Falcon, Jinx, Tunnel Rat and Big Lob and their attempts to finish training and become valued members of the GI Joe team. Lt. Falcon especially ends up in trouble and spends the movie fighting to make his name. Jinx is known as a bad luck charm. The rest are mainly just raw. Beachhead does his best as their trainer. Hilarity, hijinks and dramatics ensue.


Cobra-la is shown as the new faction. Their emergence was shocking to me the first time I saw this. Cobra-la is a major change in the previous Joe universe. GI Joe had always included a SF element but Cobra-la was an entirely new alien culture. I was impressed. The Cobra-la portions of this movie are a major departure from what had come before, but ultimately one I entirely enjoyed. Evil just seems more evil when the bad guy (Golobulous) is half snake.

This was a long way from being a perfect movie. I'm not at all an expert in the science involved but I know enough to believe that anyone who is would probably want to faint at the sight of this thing. Some of the acting is a bit on the melodramatic side for an adult. The death scene that would have added that needed bit of gritty realism got axed by Hasbro, owner of the toy line and the Joe trademark. That much being said, IT'S FREAKING GI JOE. How much realism do you want?

Bottom Line: 4.5 out of 5 mutant spores.

GI Joe: The Movie
Sunbow, Hasbro, 1986

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