Rampage review-Thrilling video game monster blockbuster action with surprising heart

Johnson is on a rampage

Rampage just might be the most entertaining video game adaptation ever made. Outfit the hulking former WWE star in a pair of cargo trousers and a snug henley tee, and throw him into any extreme situation - jungle-based video game, diesel-fueled auto stuntery, beach crimes, fighting an quake, starring across Kevin Hart - and it just works.

Rampage was a simple arcade game. The difference here is that we have perhaps one of the most enjoyable films of the year so far in terms of studio tent-poles, arguably Johnson's best movie outing so far, and the feature to finally break the video game to cinema curse. Yes!

Splendidly silly in places, with its fondness for giant monster movies obvious, this popcorn extravaganza swerves haphazardly between knowing humour and a heartfelt warning about the plague of capitalism, occasionally forgetting the fun.

Godzilla was caused by radiation, and in some sequels he was the lesser of two evils when another monster showed up. Rampage does exactly enough exposition and worldbuilding to make its story hold up under some half-hearted inspection, and doesn't bother with much more. It's still mutated monsters running wild.

Peyton says Johnson - known as The Rock during his wrestling career - has all the qualities needed to carry an action-packed blockbuster because you believe he could actually save the world from such fantastical threats. His handler is Davis (Johnson), that classic combination of ex-marine, conservationist and primatologist. Davis has raised an albino silverback gorilla called George since the ape's mother was slaughtered by poachers and the creature trusts him implicitly, communicating using basic sign language.

The only goal this character trait serves is so that his young male fans won't go, "Ew, girls".

So, the movie may be mindless, but if you're a fan of The Rock, "Rampage" is tolerable. Won't this alienate them? This is actor's first major film villain, miles away from the nasty Negan in The Walking Dead, and he's really given the time to shine with some brilliant scene-chewing one-lines, grinning from scene to scene.

Well, the experiment crashes down and one of the canisters lands in George's habitat. The animals get big and essentially indestructible; some get new abilities (have I mentioned the flying wolf) and they all want nothing more than to destroy.

Talking to Press Association, he teased: 'I think right now I am just learning as much as I can. The greedy corporation is run by brother-and-sister team of Malin Akerman and Jake Lacy, who have nefarious reasons for wanting to make animals real big and angry, and Davis is joined by a scientist (Naomie Harris) who may be the one person who can cure George before it's too late. (There is a giant alligator, though.) 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.

While Johnson's character is the brawn leading the fight against the unleashed beasts, Harris' Caldwell provides the brains - a former employee of the Wydens who has inside knowledge of their dealing as well as having her own personal invested interest in bringing the siblings down.

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