Rampage (2018) - Review
by Bryan Mero
Rampage (2018) is based off the popular arcade video game of the same name. The video game was a bit unique since you didn't play as the hero; you played as one of the monsters. George, the giant gorilla was transformed from a huma via an experimental vitamin. Lizzie, the giant lizard was transformed by a radioactive lake and Ralph the giant werewolf was transformed by some kind of food additive. Their job was the wreck the city as a three player game in order to reach the next level. George, Lizzie and Ralph would fight off the military as they pound the buildings and if they were hit too many times they would shrink back to human size and slink off screen.
If you were hoping for a true adaptation of the game, this isn't it. I understand why. The transformation of human to gorilla, reptile or wolf might be a bit over the top even with this movie. Instead they try to develop a scenario that appears logical upon first appearance and yet when it comes down to it, it's just a giant monster movie and never tries to be anything else.
Our hero is Davis Okoye (Dwayne Johnson). He is former Special Forces who traded his military career to a life of fighting off poachers and saving wildlife. He his now a gorilla specialist. He and his white gorilla George have a special bond and can even communicate via sign language. When a dangerous experiment goes wrong in orbit, the pieces from the experiment land near these creatures and are exposed...George, the gorilla, a wolf in Wyoming and a crocodile in Florida. Each one grows in size, strength and anger. It is a race to find a cure and to save downtown Chicago from the brunt of these horrific monsters.
So, it's a bit different then the video game. I think this could have been an interesting movie if they had gone with humans turning into monsters. In any event, Dwayne Johnson plays the same character you've seen in the last few movies. It's everything you'd expect from him in such a movie. I'm not sure if I want to even mention any of the other actors except for one. Jeffrey Dean Morgan plays Harvey Russell. He plays it pretty straight but seems to be having more fun then anyone in this movie. He shows up exactly when he needs to on multiple occasions and it works.
There are truly some outrageous things going on in this movie that would normally stop someone or anyone in their tracks...but not this movie. A character can have a gun shot wound and just run around like it was a bad splinter. Others can be thrown about and easily survive as long as they are part of the plot. Look, in all honesty, this is not some high drama film. There will be no awards given to this film. Even some of the GGI is noticeably bad. And for all its faults, there's still something to be said for final battle in Chicago. This is why you came to see this movie: giant monsters fighting the military, each other and Dwayne Johnson.
Save this one for a matinee or for a rental in about 3 months. Parents...this is PG-13 for crude humor, adult humor and language. So, itís probably not the best for younger children but teens are fine. If youíre a fan of the game, you might have fun with this one...just keep your expectations low and you won't be disappointed.