Dwayne Johnson has more than solidified his status as Action Star and is ever-more deserving of his superstar status with each new project.  In his latest film, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, Johnson displays charm and charisma in a light-fare action family movie.  And he sings.  (The voice emanating from the screen sure seems to be his.)

Then there’s Luis Guzmán, who in his high-octane sidekick role seems to channel Jar Jar Binks.  I thought I was in the wrong theater watching Phantom Menace 3D.  The other actors seem to tolerate Guzmán on screen.  But you can imagine Vanessa Hudgens’s mind reeling with thoughts of  “I’m going to look comatose on screen compared to Guzmán’s performance.”

Hudgens does fine.  I may be wrong, but I’m thinking the makeup department may have darkened her skin somewhat.  I couldn’t decipher whether she was playing a Filipina or Hawai’ian, but she referred to herself as Pacific Islander.  Guzmán plays her father.

With Johnson, Hudgens, and Guzmán, this might be the most diverse mainstream film of the year thus far.  And possibly the rest of the year, too.

The stakes and adventure level weren’t high enough for me, and the effects not as spectacular as what Warner Brothers is known for, but seeing Johnson’s muscles on a huge IMAX screen in 3D was enough to help pass the time.  And he does pec-pops.  I think I could watch that all day.  Who needs CG?

 

–Ken Choy

[This review was not performed at the solicitation of any publicity agency or arm of Warner Brothers.]

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