"The Expendables 2" is lazily satisfied with repeating the first movie's formula, shortcomings and grisly strengths alike, just as the first movie was content to slavishly, ploddingly cover the hits of the '80s.
- Tom Russo, Boston Globe, August 23, 2012
Nice to know America's action stars, no matter how old they get, will never lack for gainful employment.
- David Hiltbrand, Philadelphia Inquirer, August 22, 2012
Does exactly what it's supposed to do - no more, no less.
- James Berardinelli, ReelViews, August 19, 2012
Yeah, yeah, I get it: "The Expendables 2" is a fun-loving throwback to the gloriously bad action films of the 1980s. Here's what I don't get: Why couldn't it be a throwback to the good ones?
- Rafer Guzman, Newsday, August 17, 2012
At least it's efficiently and breezily forgettable. What's more, there are laughs too and here's the best part - one or two of them are actually intentional.
- Rick Groen, Globe and Mail, August 17, 2012
It's hard not to like a movie in which Bruce Willis' toupee-less CIA agent accuses Stallone's ragtag band of mercenaries of engaging in "male pattern badness.''
- Lou Lumenick, New York Post, August 17, 2012
What gives "Expendables 2" its charm is the film's unabashed nostalgia for the genre's best B-movie moments.
- Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times, August 16, 2012
The Expendables 2 is corny, barbaric and sometimes visually murky. But humor and self-deprecating macho charm make this male pattern badness crowd-pleasing fun.
- Claudia Puig, USA Today, August 16, 2012
The movie is excellent crap, fine junk, an exercise in campy movie nostalgia, and a demonstration of American supremacy in the field of nutty cosmetic enhancements for aging movie stars.
- Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly, August 16, 2012
Pleasantly dumb fun if you watch it with the right mind-set.
- Neil Genzlinger, New York Times, August 16, 2012
The Expendables 2 is reasonably cathartic in a fall-down-go-boom way, and if the picture's self-conscious riffing becomes tiresome after a while ... it's still much wittier than its predecessor.
- Stephanie Zacharek, NPR, August 16, 2012
Does it all have to be so tedious?
- John Anderson, Wall Street Journal, August 16, 2012
I wanted to like this movie. Really. But this sequel doesn't wear down your resistance; it just wears you out.
- Peter Travers, Rolling Stone, August 16, 2012
Stallone is once more an amiable host. He even pulls off heroics despite having an ill-advised 'stache laying over his mouth, which nowadays looks like a squished octopus.
- Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News, August 16, 2012
For better and worse, this ultra-violent follow-up gives the audience what it wants in full force.
- William Goss, Film.com, August 16, 2012
[A] saggy, rickety and occasionally winded geriatric action thriller ...
- Steven Snyder, TIME Magazine, August 16, 2012
They all take turns playing the clown - and for the most part, it's fun to watch them at it, even if the body count is distressingly high.
- Peter Howell, Toronto Star, August 16, 2012
Chuck Norris is also in this movie, although you should know that he gets roughly five minutes of screen time, half of those devoted to his telling of a Chuck Norris joke.
- Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald, August 15, 2012
Has the parallel between the actor and the mercenary's trade ever been so overt?
- Nick Pinkerton, Village Voice, August 14, 2012
The Expendables 2 makes a franchise out of a novelty item, and the nostalgic kick is gone: It's a reminder that most of those '80s actioners were xenophobic and dumb, that many of its stars had more muscle mass than charisma.
- Scott Tobias, AV Club, August 17, 2012