Movie Review: Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins (Paramount Pictures)

G.I. Joe’s most popular member gets his very own origin film…but maybe he shouldn’t have. Since G.I. Joe was re-imaged as a team instead of a single adventurer back in […]

G.I. Joe’s most popular member gets his very own origin film…but maybe he shouldn’t have.

Since G.I. Joe was re-imaged as a team instead of a single adventurer back in 1982, Snake Eyes has quickly become a fan favorite. First appearing as a commando and his history expanding to a background as a ninja, this silent warrior outshined the rest of the Joes. Snake Eyes was spotlighted in the previous two films, so it’s no shock that he got his own solo movie.

Only known as Snake Eyes, he’s a drifter who makes a living as an underground fighter. After saving the life of Tommy, he is welcomed into and trained by an ancient Japanese ninja clan called the Arashikage, but finds his loyalties being tested when secrets from his past are revealed.

Directed by Robert Schwentke, with a script by Evan Spiliotopoulos, this movie is really a mess. It started strong with some character building, story establishing, and then it took a left turn. The entire movie ended up being like an episode of the G.I. Joe cartoon, and that’s not a compliment! The cartoon was campy and just bad and that’s how this film was. The story was all over the place. They used a blend of technology and mysticism that came together so poorly.

I really just don’t understand why not get rid of the silliness and make it an action film in the vein of the Jason Bourne films. This was another case of trying to fit too many elements that the fans want to see into a film, in such a way, it just ruins the whole experience. Cobra, Baroness, and Scarlet are shoehorned in and there is really no reason for it.

The action sequences were a mess. All close-up shots, with a shaky camera, so you really couldn’t tell what was going on. 

Henry Goulding plays Snake Eyes and he did an OK job. Every so often you could hear him slip into his English accent. And to be honest, he was in the iconic uniform for like 2 minutes. I understand this is an adaptation, but when you go too far away from the source material, you lose the character, and that’s what happened here. Snake Eyes is a silent warrior, but in this film, he’s always talking. 

One of the more shining parts of this movie was Andrew Koji. He was good as Tommy AKA Storm Shadow, but the lack of a plot made Koji lost in this film. 

I saw the film on Imax and it’s not worth it to see it there. Honestly, it’s not even worth spending your money to see it in the theaters. Wait until it’s available for rental and save yourself some cash. 

Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins opens Friday, July 23.

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