Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s new monster movie “Rampage,” based on the 1980s arcade game, crashes into theatres this weekend, but it will have to fight off some dismal (and hilarious) reviews if it wants to succeed.
Critics aren’t being kind to the movie, in which Johnson plays a primatologist named Davis Okoye who has a strong bond with George, an albino silverback gorilla whom Okoye rescued as an infant from poachers.
It sounds like a cute friendship – until George is mutated by a chemical and goes on a (you guessed it) rampage. There are also a giant wolf and a giant crocodile.
Business Insider’s own Jason Guerrasio said in his review that the movie was “a CGI wonder with little plot and a whole lot of awful clichés and bad dialogue” but that Johnson’s charisma “proves why he’s making millions of dollars a movie.”
Johnson and his costar Jeffrey Dean Morgan seem to be the only silver lining in the movie among critics, but not even they can save what most have called a surprisingly bland monster movie with a horrible, unfocused script.
Check out some of the most scathing “Rampage” reviews below:
“I think it’s my duty to tell you that The Rock’s latest movie is really, really dumb.”
Jason Guerrasio, Business Insider
“It’s an empty golem of multiplex entertainment so bland it will make you beg for Michael Bay to direct the sequel.”
David Ehrlich, IndieWire
“The objective of the original 8-bit video game was to, while controlling one of three giant monsters (a gorilla, dinosaur or werewolf), reduce a city to rubble. Naturally, a story of such pathos and originality brought Hollywood rushing with a check for millions.”
Jake Coyle, Associated Press
“This should be a ‘Hold on!’ sort of movie, where the most complicated line of dialogue is simply: ‘Hold on!’ (Johnson says it, and it’s very satisfying). Instead, ‘Rampage’ periodically stops dead for tedious scientific explanations.”
Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune
“It’s aggressively dumb, and I’d feel safe in the assumption that everyone was in on the joke if it weren’t for the absence of any good ones … I’m not terribly convinced that the overtly campy version of this film would be any better, but I’m very certain that this one is bad.”
Emily Yoshida, Vulture
“I admit that ‘Rampage’ is a neat excuse to supersize. Animals. A crumbling Midwest city. Johnson’s muscles. Even the actors play to the rafters, with a special nod to Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s deliciously wily Black Ops character.”
Mara Reinstein, US Weekly
“It sure isn’t [drama], but sometimes it tries to be, giving Johnson and [Naomie] Harris back-to-back scenes where they tediously explain why they’re the way they are. As if people seeing a creature feature called ‘Rampage’ wanted to see anything except creatures, you know, rampaging.”
Stephen Whitty, New York Daily News
“[Jeffrey Dean Morgan is] the only person on screen who seems to a.) be having any fun, and b.) understand exactly what kind of ludicrous trash he’s in. I would have gladly watched a movie just following his character.”
Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly
“The movie feels like exactly what it is: a mega-budget studio tentpole reverse-engineered from an 8-bit arcade classic (by no fewer than four screenwriters), designed to eat dollars in much the same way the original game gobbled quarters.”
Peter Debruge, Variety
“Director Brad Peyton hits all the expected beats: You can set your watch by the fight scenes. Sometimes, he hits them too often … Peyton has clearly studied mediocre action movies, and it shows.”
Kristen Page-Kirby, The Washington Post
“The setup could hardly be more bland (or stupid): An experiment in genetic editing is taking place in space (because why not?). It goes wrong (because why wouldn’t it?). Capsules containing the experiment crash land on Earth (because where else?).”
Britton Peele, Dallas Morning News
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.