“XXX: State of the Union” (Columbia Pictures) features Ice Cube as a rogue Navy Seals sniper who must stop Willem Dafoe from assassinating the president and restructuring the government in his perverted Jeffersonian conception. Naturally, Ice Cube does this with sweet explosions – everything he touches explodes. He farts gunpowder and pees petrol. It was surprising that the movie didn’t end with an Easter egg hunt in a Cambodian mine field. That’s how many explosions there were.
Ice Cube is not afraid to hit a girl, nor is he afraid to pistol-whip one. Twice. Is there anything manlier than that? Yes. He proceeds to wreck the car of the woman who’s been in love with him for nine years, and then leaves her. She responds by giving Ice Cube a new car. The deleted scenes probably involve women baking apple pie while Ice Cube plays Nintendo.
“State” has sweeter vehicles than the original “XXX.” Compared with Ice Cube’s tank, monster truck and U.S. Navy Landing Craft Air Cushin, Vin Diesel, the star of the first film, might as well have been on rollerblades and a pogo stick. It was better to watch Ice Cube in a souped-up Panzer, mowing down parked cars on G Street, than Vin Diesel trying to do doughnuts in some Barbie hot wheels or whatever he they gave him in “XXX.”
I don’t understand why the character XXX has to hit people. I mean sure, it gets the job done, but it’s really, really mean. Prison guards, decorated soldiers and government officials – the new XXX just doesn’t care who he punches. It’s seriously doubtful that any government agency would hire someone with such a reckless disregard for authority. But then again, he did hit an outlet mall.
“XXX: State of the Union” would’ve benefited if it had developed the friendship between XXX and Xzibit’s character a little more. How long have they known each other? What common interests do they share? These are serious issues that need to be addressed if the audience is really going to believe that they’re best friends. Plus, they don’t talk nearly enough smack about each other.
Oh, and let’s not forget about the objectification of women. Come on, XXX, this is the 21st century. You can’t just have strippers dancing on muscle cars without some social repercussions. That’s completely irresponsible, for the sake of the audience and the strippers.
“XXX: State of the Union” opens Friday in Washington, D.C.