The Rock as Roadblock (Roadrock?)

I’m not that much of a G.I. Joe fan, but I respect it as one of the great 1980s toy properties. The first movie was terrible, but I’ve been watching the development of the second film with cautious optimism. Most fans dismissed it the second the director of the Justin Bieber movie was chosen, but that awoke some contrarian sense in me that suggested two wrongs just might make a right. More specifically, Jon M. Chu, as a novice director, might be more willing to respect the franchise’s history than try to create his own vision of the concept.

But I digress. When I found out the Rock would be in the G.I. Joe sequel  as Roadblock, my optimism went up a bit more. I’ve never been a wrestling fan, but I love the Rock–mostly on the strength of his performance in The Rundown (one of my favorite movies), but also his general personality. He’s fun to watch.* And man, is he psyched to be in G.I. Joe.

The above pic was posted on Johnson’s Twitter account, showing him in full Roadblock costume. I have absolutely no legitimate reason to be optimistic about this film, and yet…there is a precedent. Star Trek: The Motion Picture turned off Star Trek fans with its incredibly slow pace, awkward dialogue, odd characterization of the main cast, and the forced addition of new characters. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan kicked ass by going back to what made the original show great–action, suspense, great dialogue and character interaction, and a focus on the main characters. It respected the franchise.

I think G.I. Joe: Retaliation just might pull off the same trick. But…I’ve been wrong before.

For more on the Rock’s importance to the new film, check out Poe Power Pal GeneralsJoes‘s post, G.I. Joe: Retaliation influenced by “The Rock’s” positive impact.

*At one point there was a plan to make a buddy cop flick called Blowback starring the Rock and Ryan Reynolds. I’m sad it never got made. Very sad.

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  • I continue to get more and more excited for this film. I was as nervous as anyone else with the announcement of Jon Chu, but ever since then I've been nothing but impressed. The cast, the enthusiasm, the Twit Pics. It's all good!

  • I for one enjoyed the first G.I. Joe flick. Berating that movie is like complaining Deep Blue See wasn't a psychological thriller. Regardless there were a lot of things that could have made it even better. I'm not really getting myself hyped for Joe2, but I'll go see it. One thing that made me go "eh" was hearing Walton Goggins might be in it. Maybe he's a great guy and hopefully will surprise me, but I'm just not a fan. The Rock however, whether you love him or hate him, he is gauranteed to be entertaining! =)

  • If you showed me this picture without telling me this was from the new G.I. Joe movie, I would have thought, "Oh, the Rock's making some random war movie, right?"

  • Rockblock! I'm stoked for this movie!! Hopefully CC will look more like CC and not the Love child of Snape and Krang

  • I wanted to like the Joe film, because I liked the original cartoon and had a few toys…Mostly early 90's neon ones but that's mostly because I was a late adopter…My parents spent all there 1980's income on MOTU and TMNT…I have a cursory knowledge of G.I. Joe and enjoy reading reviews of the each new toy. Additionally, I'm sad that Renegades is canceled 🙁 My point is that I like G.I. Joe…I would have walked out of the theater and demanded my money back if i was alone. They screwed up so monumental that it made the Van Dam Street Fighter movie look like a better G.I Joe film. At least they intentionally made a shitty camp film that could be enjoyed on a "cult" level.

    I didn't mind the Sci-Fi stuff. I would have preferred a more realistic depiction of modern military capabilities, but G.I. Joe has always been "a little" futuristic. With technology advancing as fast as it is today and modern movie goers exceptions it was acceptable. Regrettable, but acceptable. Personally I think the military guys in the Transformers films should have been the Joes. They have the level of tech and "feel" i would have expected to see of the Joes. The G.I Joe film could have been a spin off of Transformers (explaining the Sci-Fi tech) and Hasbro could have built up an inter-related universe that could include M.A.S.K. and other other potential toys/cartoon series.

    The biggest problems was Cobra, Baroness and Duke characterization and back story.
    I tried to give it a second chance on Netflix, but I still can't comprehend why they keep calling Dr. Mind Bender Cobra Commander, or Dukes Girlfriend Baroness…CC should have been handled like he was on Renegades. Like Bin Laden from a secret location giving orders to his generals. It would have been fun to make it a mystery of who CC could have been…It certainly would have made him a more menacing character. At least that's what I would have done. The Baroness/duke back story was nonsensical. SHE IS EUROPEAN FOR F%$# SAKE! DUKE shouldn't have been the noobie to the group.

    All that aside. Rock as Roadblock is AWESOME! I smell what the Block is cooking! I loved him in the Rundown and Walking Tall. One of the best SNL skits EVER had him parody Superman. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g7M0gkgCxW0

    I never herd of the Buddy cop film project you spoke of Poe, but Reynolds and him seams like such a PERFECT pair that I can't believe I never thought of it before! I'd probably see that movie twice!

  • I think it will begreat. I still think ROC was better than the Bay Transformers films.

  • As a die hard Joe fan and collector, the lead up to ROC was much more exciting than the actual film and most of the toys from it. That said, there were many improvements in modern figure design from am engineering and detail stand point during ROC. I can only hope the same happens with this film as well as improved character design.

    Now with this film, I have much more faith as it seems for the most part it is a from scratch film using a lot of fan base opinion to help shape it. So far I like what I have read and seen, it is indeed an exceptionally exciting time to be a Joe fan with fun cool toys out and on the horizon and a new film with more new playthings in the making.