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Movie Review: 'Rampage' Destroys Preconceived Notions

by Todd A. Smith

 

(Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures)

 

Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover 

 


Just throw away any preconceived notions that might exist about Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s new film, “Rampage” because those notions will probably turn out false.


Childish.


Cartoonish.


Silly. 


Razzie.


No, “Rampage” is an action packed, emotional movie that will resonate equally with youngsters as well as old folks.


In “Rampage,” a scientific company has come up with a way to edit one’s genetic make up.


The method of genetic editing should provide a way to help people deal with debilitating health problems.


Genetic editing’s intent is not to manipulate one’s genes to produce some type of superhuman that is so much more physically superior than other people.


The intent is to fix genetic defects and make people’s lives healthier.


But like many mad scientists, the allure of striking it rich in the business world is more important than doing what is ethical to mankind.


The research company run by the brother and sister team of Claire Wyden (Malin Akerman) and Brett Wyden (Jake Lacy) has to conduct their genetic editing research in outer space because of the danger of the experiments.


But when a space ship containing their successful genetic editing formula crashes, the material crashes to the Earth’s surface like a meteorite.


Animals like the albino gorilla George go from somewhat loving creatures to gigantic and super-aggressive demons that terrorize their miniscule opponents and wreak havoc on a shocked and unprepared world.


In “Rampage,” it is up to the good guys of the film to stop the monster-like animals from destroying the planet and everyone in it with their seemingly unstoppable rage and strength.


In “Rampage,” Johnson does not break any acting barriers, but he knows how to make a spring or summer blockbuster.


While Johnson will probably never win any awards as a thespian, he knows what his fans want.


And while many action films just have action and gratuitous violence, “Rampage” injects a lot of heart into the action genre because of Davis Okoye’s (Johnson) relationship with the gorilla, George.


The true acting talent in “Rampage” is Naomie Harris as Dr. Kate Caldwell.


The actress, who is known for dramatic roles in films like “Moonlight” and “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom” finesses her role just right in this action flick.


Although action films do sometimes feature celebrated thespians, the movies usually do not call for too much drama and nuance.


Harris does a fabulous job of displaying her acting chops without overacting.


While Davis and George bring the heart and the action to the film, the character Burke (Joe Manganiello) brings the personality.


Although his Southern drawl is a little overdone, especially in 2018, Manganiello brings enough charisma to stand up to the strength of Johnson.


But while “Rampage,” is definitely a good movie that deserves to be seen, it can get a little cartoonish as the animals continue to grow to gigantic proportions.


However, the film contains enough twists and enough heart to resonate with audiences, both young and old.

 

And this performance and film will wash away any residue from Johnson’s Razzie Award (given to the worst movies of the year) winning performance in “Baywatch.”



REGAL RATINGS

FOUR CROWNS=EXCELLENT

THREE CROWNS=GOOD

TWO CROWNS=AVERAGE

ONE CROWN=POOR


This article was published on Friday 13 April, 2018.
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