G.I. Joe vs. Transformers 2: Popcorn Movie Showdown!

Published 6 years ago by , Updated August 14th, 2013 at 4:31 pm,

joe vs transformers G.I. Joe vs. Transformers 2: Popcorn Movie Showdown!

Summer is winding down and two of the blockbuster season’s biggest entries, Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen and G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra have both debuted in theaters to mixed opinion amongst audiences, total lambasting by critics, bale fulls of money made at the box office for Paramount and even more bale fulls made in merchandising by Hasbro, the company whose toys were the inspiration for both films.

But which film was better (read: not as bad as the other)? Even the critics who tore apart both Transformers 2 and G.I. Joe would be hard-pressed to argue that both films are equally as bad. And among you, the fans (or haters), that debate is even more polarized, if our comment sections have been any indication.

So now, for your consideration, Screen Rant is proud to present our first Popcorn Movie Showdown: Transformers 2 vs G.I. Joe!



transformers 2 optimus prime swords G.I. Joe vs. Transformers 2: Popcorn Movie Showdown!

OK, so Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen had some of the best-rendered CGI ever to appear on film, hands down. Expect the film to get some kind of (Academy?) award nod for its technical work. And if you’ve seen Transformers 2 in IMAX, you already know that the “true IMAX” sequences of robot-on-robot action are gorgeous enough to make you almost believe that transforming alien robots do exist. Amazing stuff.

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra had some cool f/x moments (most people seemed to enjoy the accelerator suit sequence), but nothing even CLOSE to the level of Transformers 2. The two films are not even on the same plane in that respect. Clearly, the win for best f/x goes to Michael Bay and his team of tech wizards (aka Industrial Light and Magic)…

…But not so fast – the term “eye candy” means more than who had the smoothest CGI. What about the ladies? G.I. Joe had red-hot Rachel Nichols making a big-screen splash, and god bless Sienna Miller for always wearing something tight and revealing in every scene (even when her character was standing in the frozen Artic tundra). Now that’s dedication! However, Transformers 2 had the lovely Isabel Lucas and, of course, queen-gorgeous herself, Megan Fox. Even that little toy truck robot wanted to hump her leg; the G.I. Joe ladies got no such love. But hell, in this case, isn’t a visual aid better? Decide for yourself:

The Ladies of G.I. Joe:

baroness G.I. Joe vs. Transformers 2: Popcorn Movie Showdown!

Sienna Miller

scarlett gi joe G.I. Joe vs. Transformers 2: Popcorn Movie Showdown!

Rachel Nichols

The Ladies of Transformers 2:

Winner: In every sense, Transformers 2 was the prettiest belle at the ball.



So let’s just come clean: Both so-called scripts for these movies were half-baked hams that couldn’t even pass for coherent if they were reviewed by the blind and deaf. And that’s putting it mildly. It was a shame, too, because both scripts were written by some of the industry’s best and brightest talent: Transformers 2 was scribed by (two of my favorites) Robert Orci and Alex Kurtzman (Fringe, Star Trek), while G.I. Joe was written by Stuart Beattie (Pirates of the Caribbean, 30 Days of Night).

So what went so wrong that we ended up suffering the go-stop-go pace of Transformers 2 and the make-you-cringe dialogue of G.I. Joe? Or worse yet, The Twins? No doubt the pain we’re feeling now rippled out from the WGA Strike of 2007, when studios pushed their writers to finish the job quick-fast in order to get all scripts possible into production (in whatever half-cooked state they were in) before the impending strike left the studios without any tentpoles for Summer ’09. I like to think I’m a pretty good writer myself and I can tell you: It doesn’t matter if you’re freaking Shakespeare – if you aren’t allowed sufficient time and space to write a story right, it isn’t going to turn out right.

Now we know. And knowing is half the battle. Hollywood: Pay those writers what they’re owed. We’ve all been officially reminded why good writing matters (don’t let those big box office receipts fool you).

Winner: G.I. Joe at least kept things moving lightly and quickly enough for (most of us) to forget that we were watching a half-cooked story – so long as nobody was talking. At least the plot was easy to follow: Tug-of-war over destructive warheads between good guys and bad guys. Simple. Transformers 2 had me scratching my head so hard, so often, my scalp started to bleed (what was the point of having The Fallen in there? Anybody?).

Keep reading to find out who wins the G.I. Joe vs. Transformers 2 Showdown!

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  1. Paul Young might be the greatest singer of the 80′s.


  3. Yes I know who Paul young is. I was just kidding :)

  4. Lol whats with these people unleashing the fury of the caps lock… Either way i liked them both but its probably obvious you guys know i love tf2. “job accomplished”…that had me laughing hard at work.

  5. Im with you Jago – Transformers 2 is awesome, especially in IMAX!

  6. I thought GI Joe was one of the worst movies i have ever seen. i did find some parts (unintentionally) hilarious. i never saw Transformers 2 because i did not care for the first one. At least Transformers had Shia Labeouf and Megan Fox though.

  7. Transformers 1 and 2 were both nerd adventures. GI Joe was much better. It was not a nerd movie like Transformers. No one payed attention to the autobots, it was only Megan Fox.
    GI Joe is AWESOME.

  8. YO JOE!

  9. @michael
    without trying to start something alls i will say was that at the end of each movie i couldn’t wait for the sequel for more robots in action not megan fox… I didn’t know who this person was before tf1 so its obvious i didn’t see the first one because of her.

  10. Sorry if this doesn’t have much to do with anything, but did anyone else seem to be bored by the action in Transformers? I mean huge robots smashing each other sounds awesome but for some reason it was just sort of lame and not so cool. But also G.I. Joe was totally better, not great, but better than Transformers.

  11. What I don’t get is this. Mr. Bay has made;
    Bad Boys
    The Rock
    Pearl Harbor
    The Island
    Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2006) version?
    and two Transformer movies

    and on a 1-10 rating system he’s never made it much beyond a 7. To his defenders, I say, what’s up with that?
    While it’s no doubt that the movies he’s made have entertainment value, I can’t justify seeing his movies twice. They just haven’t been that caliber, and it’s usually been problems with the story. I feel for the guy, but after 8 movies I think you have to face it, he makes B pictures and that’s probably all he’ll ever do in the foreseeable future.

    “G.I. Joe” while having a common core story with “Transformers,” people VS machines, I would say appeals to more people, because it’s about people more than the technology. Now before all you motor/tech heads pounce on me consider that the average person can’t even set aside doubts that such technologies or realities will either be here shortly or ever. Even some of the really smart out here have strong doubts, because they are aware of the
    limitations of technology. For example, the problem of stiction and nano machines has been long recognized, as a barrier to doing some of the stuff portrayed. Brownian motion is another problem.

    Despite the barriers, even the barrier of understanding, people can relate to the emotions of the characters. When the core motivations and experiences are finally revealed then the average person can relax and not worry so much about the unfamiliar ground and follow the story. The story has to be good enough that whatever is incomprehensible will be sought after a second or third time to enhance what we already understand. “Joe” did this better than
    “Transformers 2″ in my view and comes out better for it.

  12. I can see all your points as valid but i still quite enjoyed Transformers 2. I actually liked it better than the first one because it had so much to offer. And i can’t wait to see GIJOE

  13. Id have to say Tranformers 2 was more enjoyable than GI Joe, though GI was still good, you can’t topple Prime T-bagging Decepticons. Snake Eyes put up a good fight, but It was more enjoyable to see Prime dealing out beatdowns.

  14. Plots were both ok as long as you understood what the Matrix in TF2 was. As hot as Megan Fox is, I always go for the redhead. The comparison that puts TF2 over the top is the “Final Battle” matchup (TF2 Egyptian desert vs GI Joe polar ice cap). The final battle in TF2 was so awesome that I cried. It’s the Michael Bay style at its best. As cool as GI Joe was, it didn’t move me to tears (in a good way).

  15. gi joe is much worse because of the terrible script/dialogue.

  16. This one is really simple…meaning, rated in their unpleasant-ness.

    Transformers 2 was like getting gang raped in the showers at the ‘Jackson County Maximum Security Penitentiary for the Genitally Gifted’

    Whereas ‘GI Joe’ is like eating a bag of peanuts and finally hitting that weird one that tastes really funky.

  17. G.I. Joe was way better in every way. Transformers 2 had an annoying script for little kiddies to laugh at potty jokes: like looking at someones ass on the big screen (I looked away, I didn’t laugh, and wasn’t funny), a robot having testacles, and masterbation jokes; that’s not Transformers—it’s crappy, childish, overly played, annoying humor. By the way, the acting was overplayed (ex. “OPTIMUUUUUUS!!!”). Unconvincing dramatic shots in the cinematography, also I could not see what was going on during all the robot fighting (it was too chaotic). Also, the robot fighting was some of the most boring action I have seen all year. Honestly, I thought the first one was a little bit better. I actually LIKED the action on the first one. But on TF2 it was…boring, for some reason (couldn’t figure it out).

  18. G.I. Joe…actually had a better script than TF2. Not perfect, but better (that’s what this talk forum is for, right?). For example, the comedy in the script didn’t have THAT many jokes (thank God), and the jokes weren’t overdone or childish, or anything like that, and the dialogue resembled what G.I. Joe characters would say in the show. The acting was *GREAT* FOR WHAT IT WAS; the acting was actually perfect for resembling its source material—the 80s cartoon G.I. Joe show. Unlike Transformers 2, the acting wasn’t overdone in G.I. Joe. The Transformers 2 actors tryed way too hard to take it seriously, so, overall the so-called “effective dramatic moments” were unconvincing and bored me to death, along with all the boring action scenes with bad cinematograpy (the look of each shot—it just looked boring, and it looked to chaotic, and I couldn’t see what was going on = bad cinematography). The action in G.I. Joe was way more fun to watch because you can actually see what’s going on, and the battles weren’t AS chaotic as TF2 (=GOOD cinematography, and more fun to watch). About the chicks…G.I. Joe even had hotter chicks (especially Rachel Nichols (redhead)). Megan Fox looks like a “walking lipgloss”. Transformers 2 is one of the top 10 worst, most boring films of this year by far, bar none! LOL!!!

  19. GI JOe had the better script?!?!? Are you serious? The script was so poorly written… don’t know where to begin. Let’s see, they wanted to put in as much back-story as possible, so the best they could come up with is to insert random flashbacks throughout the whole f-ing movie.

    “well, for the next scene to make sense, we need to establish that Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow trained together. Ok, ‘Storm Shadow stares off into random space [insert flashback]‘. Brilliant!”

    And give me gangsta talking robots over the s****-worthy dialogue of Gi Joe (exhibit A – any dialogue between Ripcord and Scarlet, exhibit B between Duke and Ripcord, of which there was way too much, etc.). No one in that movie could act (or were directed propery), with the exceptions of Baroness and Destro, which surprised the outta me. At least TF has Shia, who no matter what anyone says carried both movies.

  20. I think G.I Joe was better overall. TF2 did not develop any plot action until the second hour, so for the first we just sat around watching miniature crude sexuality scenes. Plus, G.I Joe at least followed one plotline, TF2 goes from Shia having seizures from the cube to something called the Matrix? WTF? G.I Joe was more suited for adults and kids over the age of 7. I mean, the only scenes that made TF2 not suitable for a “PG” rating was teh crude perverted scenes that they made. As for the eye candy, Sienna’s as hot as Megan, ESPECIALLY as a brunette…Holy crap…and Rachel Nichols is as hot if not hotter than Isabel Lucas.

  21. I didnt watch gi joe but i have to admit tf2 wasnt that great
    i mean i went to the cenimas to watch robots bash and incenirate each other, not shia lebouef to sit down in front of a fire for an hour, or him and meagen fox to kiss
    like tht
    there were awsome action scences bbut i agree wiith bleh
    sezuiers? cube? matrix? none of it fitted together like the first film

  22. I honestly watched Transformers as a child so I have some understanding of Transformers. I watched G.I. Joe as a child too and can honestly say I was not impressed with G.I. Joe I was really disappointed. Do I expect to see anymore G.I. Joe movies in the future no. DO I expect to see movie incredibly awesome Transformer movies in the future hell yes. You see recognizable characters is the key. Transformers used the original Optimus Prime voice I remember G.I. Joe there were no real recognizable wow characters. If Cobra’s leader would have had a reptile face oh you bet the movie would have done way better because of the wow! There is the character I remember factor. I spent too much time in G.I. Joe to figure out who was supposed to be who. Transformers I knew instantly. If they would have called the G.I. Joe movie something else other than G.I. Joe it would have done way better and by now there would be more sequels. G.I. Joe is awesome. Maybe Steven Spielberg will get make it the way it should have been made to begin with.