Vault Movie Review: “Rampage”

Updated on December 5, 2018
Movie Beasts profile image

There are many movies that are worth seeing, but there are a lot of stinkers as well. My goal here is to weed out the good from the bad.

Rampage

Source

Synopsis

Davis (Dwayne Johnson) is a trained animal expert at a zoo, but he has a particularly special bond with an albino gorilla, named George. The two are able to communicate with each other through sign language, and the gorilla even has a sense of humor that he uses to tease Davis. One day, a group of astronauts are returning to earth with a mysterious substance that drastically increases the size of any animal it is exposed to, while also sending some animals on a bloodthirsty path of destruction. This substance is bad news, and has been exposed to a rat on the spaceship. In a desperate effort to save their research one, astronaut releases three capsules of the substance into earth’s atmosphere.

Late that night, one capsule finds its way into George’s exhibit. Curious, he examines the capsule, but inadvertently releases the substance. Exposed to the substance, George is discovered (the next morning) to have drastically increased in size, gotten into the grizzly bear exhibit, and killed a bear with ease. Concerned, Davis brings the scared George into the lab, learns that he is still growing, and finds out that George is not alone. Elsewhere, a wolf has been exposed to another capsule and is slaughtering every living thing in its path. Davis must find a way to make sense of this situation and save his buddy George from becoming a monster of destruction without having to kill him.

Official Trailer

The Pros & Cons

The Pros
The Cons
Davis & George (+6pts)
Malin Akerman (-5pts)
Negan (+3pts)
Naomie Harris (-3pts)
Monster Action (+4pts)
The Plot (-8pts)
All movies start with an average score of 75pts, points are then added or subtracted based on each Pro and Con. Each Pro or Con is designated points, ranging from 0-10, to convey how significant these Pros or Cons are.
Source

Pro: Davis & George (+6pts)

I was not expecting much from this movie, but the bond between Davis and George added a much needed layer to this story. These two are quickly setup as close friends, and The Rock does a great job at conveying his character’s love and concern for his buddy. The relationship works for two reasons. The visual effects were effective, and Dwayne Johnson did a great job of selling his character’s love for the ape.

The filmmakers were able to get George’s jovial attitude across through the visual effects that were very well done. The quality was fine, but the detail that went into his facial expressions were what made it so effective. You know when this character is sad, happy, scared, and angry. It may not sound like much, but it added a lot of personality to this character. Then there is Dwayne Johnson’s performance. It is not an incredibly dramatic performance, but the guy could be entertaining even if he was acting alongside...well a rock (pun severely intended). On top of being entertaining, he makes the character’s love for George very believable, which made it very easy to get invested in Davis’ story.

Source

Con: Malin Akerman (-5pts)

A movie is only as good as its villain, right? Well this one stunk. Now, there was not anything wrong with Malin Akerman’s performance. This character was just written to be as one-dimensional and bland, as one-dimensional, bland characters come. She is one of those antagonists who are evil, because money. That is all this character wants, money. The character gets no development, and has the absolute dumbest plan that I have seen from an antagonist in a long time.

Really? Your plan is to lure a group of enraged, destructive monsters to your exact location? You see that going your way? It was blatant, lazy writing if I have ever seen it before. Malin Akerman did as good as most actors could have done with the role. Could some actors have brought more to the role? Sure, but there was certainly not much to work with here.

Source

Pro: Negan (+3pts)

Well, well, well, if it isn’t Negan himself. Well, it definitely is not Negan, but it sure looks and sounds just like him. Jeffrey Dean Morgan basically plays this character as if Negan was a good guy. Sure, the character finds himself toe-to-toe with The Rock a few times, but the two are really on the same side here. During all that, it definitely felt like Jeffrey Dean Morgan was doing an impression of his popular character from The Walking Dead, but it worked for this movie.

It gave some extra flavor that the movie definitely benefited from having. He plays the character in a super cheesy way, that adds some humor and keeps the tone light. It is a ridiculous premise for a movie. There is no doubt about that, but Jeffrey Dean Morgan played the role in a way that made it feel like the filmmakers knew just how ridiculous the concept was. This made it easy to go along with the silly nature of the character, and lightened up the movie’s tone for the better.

Source

Con: Naomie Harris (-3pts)

Again, my issue was not with the actor here. However, Naomie Harris plays one of those characters that makes you wonder what on earth the character is doing in this situation. Why are you here, lady?! She is one of the scientists that helped develop the substance that is causing all of these problems.

For some reason she is right there, alongside The Rock, through this entire story. They set her up as a potential love interest for Davis, which feels completely unnecessary and forced. The filmmakers just kind of forced her into this story, and she takes screentime away from other more important characters. Her character gets no development, and there is no payoff for her being present through this whole thing, which makes the character feel like an extreme waste of time.

Source

Pro: Monster Action (+4pts)

The monster action in this movie is decent, but not great. There are some cool moments, sure. These mostly involve the giant wolf, but after that, the action does not feel like anything we have not seen in countless other movies. Was it bad? No, but it was not great, though there were a few spots where it was mildly entertaining.

The good spots, like I already mentioned, mostly involved the giant wolf. When the main antagonist, played by Malin Akerman, learns of the wolf’s whereabouts, she sends a bunch of hired guns to go get him (really a fool proof plan, if you ask me). The following sequence is pretty intense and darn entertaining. After that, the movie does not seem to do anything all that special with its action.

Source

Con: The Plot (-8pts)

As mentioned before, this movie has a ridiculous premise. If you know what this movie is about, that should not be much of a shock to you, and while the filmmakers made a plot to setup this premise, they did not care to make a plot that made any real sense. The antagonist makes this substance for no good reason. She seems to think it will make her money, but there is no real reason as to why, considering the drug does not seem to do anything good. Then, the antagonist gets a plan to save her investment, and I have already mentioned my issues with that plan.

The movie follows Davis who is trying to get his buddy out of the situation but does not have any plan on how he is going to accomplish that. His main focus is just figuring out what is going on (you and me both, pal), and following George. Everything is just kind of “happening” with very little logic from the characters or the writers. The whole movie had a stench of lazy filmmaking that was hard to look past.

Grading Scale

Grade
Category
Points
A+
Amazing
95-100
A-
Great
90-94
B+
Good
85-89
B-
Decent
80-84
C+
Average
75-79
C-
Watchable
70-74
D+
Bad
65-69
D-
Terrible
60-64
F
Garbage
45-59
Source

Grade: C- (72pts)

Through all of the marketing, and trailers, Rampage looked like it would be a lazily made film that might have a few decent qualities. That is exactly what this movie was. The plot made no sense and felt like it was thrown together to very loosely explain why there are giant animals destroying a major city. The protagonist was entertaining, but had no plan at all. To make things worse, the antagonist was bland, and had a plan that made absolutely no sense. There were some redeeming qualities, but they were not enough to make up for the bad.

The CGI was decent and was able to add a lot of personality to the gorilla. The relationship between Davis and George was pretty entertaining, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s character added a flavor of cheesiness that the movie definitely benefited from having. Point is, the movie was not all bad, but there was not much going for it, when compared to all that was going against it. The result is a movie that is watchable if it is on, but is not one I would recommend. There are plenty of better movies that are worth checking out.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, reelrundown.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://reelrundown.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)