Primatologist Davis Okoye (Dwayne Johnson), a man who keeps people at a distance, shares an unshakable bond with George, the extraordinarily intelligent, silverback gorilla who has been in his care since birth. But a rogue genetic experiment gone awry mutates this gentle ape into a raging creature of enormous size. To make matters worse, it’s soon discovered there are other similarly altered animals. As these newly created alpha predators tear across North America, destroying everything in their path, Okoye teams with a discredited genetic engineer to secure an antidote, fighting his way through an ever-changing battlefield, not only to halt a global catastrophe but to save the fearsome creature that was once his friend.
What We Thought:
Rampage stars Dwayne The Rock Johnson, that’s all you need to know about the movie. Dwayne Johnson is one of the most charismatic people in Hollywood and has pretty much become a genre of film himself. If you like movies starring The Rock, you will enjoy Rampage. If you do not, you won’t.
Overall I did enjoy the film, but I did think it took itself a bit too seriously at times. Based on the video game of the same name, I wanted outright destruction and chaos. The end is that, but there is a lot more plot to it than expected. Johnson plays a former special ops soldier turned primatologist who has a bond with George, a gorilla. When a space station explodes, an experimental gas (?) is released turning George more violent and making him grow much larger than what he was. The company paying for the experiments in space want their stuff back which have turned George, a wolf and an alligator into super creatures. All three creatures race towards Chicago and Johnson along with the government try to stop the carnage! I mean rampage!
Dwayne Johnson is a funny dude. He has a great back & forth with George and the audience reacted greatly to that chemistry. The biggest laughs in the film are with Johnson and the gorilla. George knows sign language and that communication opens the door to a lot of jokes that get laughs. When the film is light hearted, I enjoyed it a lot more. The movie is about 3 super creatures destroying a city, I don’t expect a big narrative. I want explosions, laughs and Johnson smiling and flexing.
At times there is a lot more going on. Malin Akerman and Jake Lacy play brother & sister who run the company that made the experiments. Naomie Harris is a fired employee who thinks she can reverse what happened. Jeffrey Dean Morgan is Negan, excuse me a government employee who tries to help Johnson and Harris eventually. His character sounds exactly like Negan (his character in The Walking Dead) and I’m not really sure what he was aiming for in his performance. I don’t know if the film needed all of this.
There is also a scene that shows the wolf and soldiers hunting it that serves no purpose whatsoever. It shows how big and ferocious it is, but why? There’s no real scene showing how deadly the alligator is. We care about George. George is the important character. He has a name! The wolf and alligator don’t have names. We didn’t need that scene whatsoever.
Ultimately your enjoyment of Rampage comes down to whether or not you like over-the-top, big explosion CGI movies. I had fun with it, but wanted a bit more. I’m not a big fan of CGI-fests, but I expected it here. None of the creatures or destruction look real, but that’s fine. It’s not quite as ridiculous as the Transformers movies, but it does have the same type of feel as those movies. Johnson and the gorilla are great and I wanted some more jokes, but overall the movie is…
Cast & Crew:
- Dwayne The Rock Johnson
- Jeffrey Dean Morgan
- Naomie Harris
- Malin Akerman
- Jake Lacy
- Joe Manganiello
Recommended If You Like:
- San Andreas
- Movies with The Rock!