More fun than a barrel of gorillas

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GIANT BEASTS: Dwayne Johnson battles giant monsters as they attack Chicago.

Rampage

  •  Action adventure; Cert M, contains violence and content that may disturb; 1hr 47mins
  • Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Naomie Harris, Joe Manganiello, Marley Shelton, Jake Lacy, Breanne Hill, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Malin Akeman
  • Director: Brad Peyton

IF you are looking for big, dumb fun these school holidays it doesn’t come any bigger, dumber or more fun than Rampage.

Dwayne Johnson’s traps are more overdeveloped and his tongue more firmly in his cheek than ever in this action adventure about giant mutant animals attacking Chicago.

He plays Davis Okoye, the primatologist in charge of George, an albino gorilla at a United States wildlife centre.

George is one of three animals that run amok after capsules of mutagenic gas falling from an exploded space station turn them into rampaging giants.

This film is action-packed from the first minute, which shows the destruction of the space station that gets the adventure rolling.

Johnson and his ape best friend are very cute together, until they are joined by Naomie Harris (Moneypenny from the most recent James Bond movies). She plays Dr Kate Caldwell, the genetic engineer who unintentionally created the gas and is trying to put things right.

Of course, being a former military special-ops soldier, Davis is able to jump into a helicopter and head after George to try to get him to calm down.

No such luck, as slavering corporate baddies (Malin Akerman and Jack Lacy) draw the giant ape to the centre of Chicago using radiowaves along with a similarly mutated wolf and alligator.

Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Negan from The Walking Dead) hams it up as only Negan knows how as a Government black-ops agent who has the whole shebang packed into an aircraft – apparently for the sole purpose of making the film even more fun.

It all adds up to the sort of absurdist adventure that will have you laughing in all the wrong places and loving every minute of it. It’s nice to see a few Chicago landmarks being smashed to pieces for a change. I guess New York has had all the giant apes it can handle.

Leave reason at the door and just enjoy the thrill ride. The kids will have a ball.

8/10

diane.mccarthy@whakatanebeacon.co.nz

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