Reviewed by: Maggie Hays
Are dinosaurs mentioned in the BIBLE? Answer
WHY did God create dinosaurs? Answer
NOAH’S ARK—Did Noah take dinosaurs on the Ark? Answer
Dwayne Johnson … Davis Okoye—a primatologist and head of an anti-poaching unit out of Rwanda
Naomie Harris … Dr. Kate Caldwell—a discredited genetic engineer
Malin Akerman … Claire Wyden—the woman responsible for the infection and mutation of George, Ralph, and Lizzie with the mutagenic serum for Project: Rampage
Jeffrey Dean Morgan … Agent Harvey Russell—works for a government agency called OGA
Jake Lacy … Brett Wyden
Joe Manganiello … Burke
Marley Shelton … Dr. Kerry Atkins
P.J. Byrne … Nelson
Demetrius Grosse … Colonel Blake
Jack Quaid … Connor
Breanne Hill … Amy
Matt Gerald … Zammit
Will Yun Lee … Agent Park
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|Director:||Director: Brad Peyton—“Journey 2: The Mysterious Island” (2012), “San Andreas” (2015)|
|Producer:||Flynn Picture Company
New Line Cinema
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Warner Bros. Pictures
This movie is based on the 1980s Atari video game featuring apes and monsters destroying cities.
The basic premise for this film is that scientists have discovered how to do very advanced genetic editing. In a series of unfortunate accidents, the substance to accomplish this editing affects an albino gorilla, an alligator, and a wolf. The three animals mutate to monstrous sizes and violent behavior patterns and go on a rampage. Normally these animal species do not combine their skills to work as a team, but they are being manipulated and drawn to Chicago where they can be controlled by the company that produced the DNA-altering substance. The albino gorilla, George, had been rescued as a baby from poachers by Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, who plays Davis Okoye, professional primatologist who taught George sign language. However, infected by the serum, George no longer wants to communicate with Okoye. So, in just under two hours, our hero Okoye must subdue and save George, along with the entire city of Chicago.
The first half of the movie lays the groundwork and storyline and introduces the characters; the second half is almost nonstop action.
If you are considering this film for your family, here are some observations that you may find helpful.
The gorilla had been taught how to give the middle finger and does this twice, supposedly as a joke.
OBJECTIONABLE LANGUAGE—There is way too much bad language in this film. There are over 75 crude words—almost one every two minutes. Discounting the non-dialog action sequences, I’d say there are few conversations in the film that do not contain vulgar language. I observed 15 mentions of “h*ll,” almost 30 times “sh*t” was said (including “Holy sh*t”), the names of God and Jesus were disrespectfully used a dozen times, there were 7 mentions of “d*mn,” “motherf…” (the f-word is drowned out by sound), 5 mentions of “b*tch” or “son of a b*tch,” 7 mentions of “A*s” or “A*s hole,” and a smattering here and there of “b*stard,” “screw,” “s*cks,” and other crude words.
VIOLENT CONTENT—This is not a movie about three fluffy pets that attend a garden party. The title of the movie sums it up pretty well. ”Rampage,” the Cambridge English Dictionary defines as “violent and usually wild behavior.” That is what you have in this movie. Three creatures of amazing size and strength rampage through Chicago, destroying it as they go. They leap up and chomp on military aircraft that is attacking them. They kill people. They are impervious to military weapons. Think King Kong meets Cloverfield meets Jurassic World meets Pacific Rim. Put those films in a blender and out pours “Rampage.”
GORE—An animal eats a person alive. An animal’s head is bitten off. An animal is impaled with a beam through its eye. Human blood is seen dripping in several scenes from gory injuries. Humans are seen flying through the air as animals attack and throw them.
DISTURBING IMAGES—A space station shows mutilated human bodies floating in weightless space, animals are seen in distress many times, dead animals are seen lying around in at least 3 scenes, Okoye, wounded, walks around in a bloodied shirt during much of the movie, soldiers are violently killed in battle, a helpless woman is trapped in a space capsule that explodes.
SHOCK SEQUENCES—There are several scenes where things are quiet then, suddenly, an animal jumps out and lunges at people. I nearly jumped out of my seat several times. Consider this if you have coronary issues.
SKIMPY CLOTHING—A woman wears a tight dress that reveals much cleavage. Another woman wears short shorts and is also seen in her underwear, getting dressed. There is no full nudity.
ALCOHOL/DRUGS/SMOKING—At one point, a character, after fighting the animals, says “I need a drink.” No alcohol is seen. There is no evidence of smoking or any drug use.
SEX—No sexual activity is obvious. However, the gorilla makes a supposedly-humorous, though crude, gesture imitating intercourse.
MORALITY ISSUES—A girl sleeps in, and while throwing on her clothes says on the phone “I’m on the Freeway now” and continues to lie about the drive to the office, adding details about traffic back-ups, etc., while she watches TV. The “bad guys” are a brother/sister team who are without conscience (sociopaths). They care nothing for the suffering of people, or animals, only how they can enrich themselves. Poachers and their cruel activities are discussed in one scene.
NEGATIVE DEPICTION OF PROTECTIVE FORCES—The Military commander is portrayed in a negative light. He does not listen to reason and seems to have an unswerving devotion to doing things his own way despite the advice of animal experts. A government agent is also portrayed in a negative way, bullying the main characters and the gorilla.
POSITIVE POINTS—There are some redeeming scenes as people get over their differences and decide to let bygones be bygones and work together to save Chicago. There are scenes that show compassion for the gorilla and his love for his caregiver.
Frankly, RAMPAGE is a silly movie. There are parts of it that don’t even make sense at all. Nothing about it is profound or thought-provoking. The special effects are excellent though. The three animals affected by the DNA-altering substance look so real it is amazing. I would say the special effects are the star of the movie, and I always admire what the entertainment industry can do to make things look so real. The soundtrack is edgy, and I found myself simply concentrating on the music, since it added to the excitement. But then, I always notice soundtracks and take note of the composers.
As to entertainment quality—I was entertained, but then I like science fiction and action movies with great soundtracks. Sometimes, due to the corny action and predictability of the film, I laughed out loud at parts that weren’t even meant to be funny. It’s just an escape B-grade flick with monsters. People who like monster movies like “Pacific Rim” and “Cloverfield” will love it. Is it worth two hours of your time? Only moviegoers can decide that. If you want to see a film that will make you think—I’d recommend CHAPPAQUIDDICK. If you want something mindless to eat popcorn by, you’d probably go for RAMPAGE. Middle school-age and older teen boys would probably get a kick out of this film, but children younger than 10 would likely find it too intense and scary. The second half of the film moves at a frenetic pace as the beasts wreak havoc on the city of Chicago and the military.
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.