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

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


One of the biggest factors in how these two movies were received undoubtedly has to do with the kind of expectations people had about them beforehand. Transformers 2 had MONSTER expectations facing it – people had been chomping at the bit ever since the first trailers and clips started dropping. We here at Screen Rant know firsthand how crazy TF2 mania was: the amount of site traffic the movie generated was nuts. People couldn’t wait to see Transformers 2; and then they did see it. And down went (most of) their hopes and expectations, quicker than the Dow Jones last January. Suddenly we were reminded of a time honored phrase: “Beauty is only skin deep, but ugly…”

Then there was good ol’ G.I. Joe. Everybody thought you were an automatic shoe-in for the 2009 Razzie, even BEFORE your first trailer dropped. From the moment certain names started being connected to the film – Channing Tatum, Marlon Wayans – people (unfairly or not) started writing it off as D.O.A. Not even the awesomeness of actors like Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ray Park, or Christopher Eccleston could redeem you; not even Sienna Miller, displayed everywhere in skin tight leather.

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

And then people saw G.I. Joe – and they said to themselves, “Wow! Not nearly as terrible as I thought it would be!” And lucky for Paramount/Hasbro, in this era of dashed hopes and total satisfaction with mediocrity, not being terrible has become just about as good as actually being good. Pat yourselves on the back, guys.

Winner: G.I. Joe won this round for sure. It’s better to start at rock bottom and move up, rather than start high and fall fast.



Finally, we must ask ourselves, “Which of these movies was the most fun?”

Now this is where subjectivity is going to lead to a lot of debate (read: argument), so I might was well just go ahead and give you Our “Fun Factor” Winner:

While Transformers 2 had some really spectacular sequences, the agonizingly bad script and low return on high expectations were just too painful to get past. Add to the that The Twins (who were annoying at best, offensive at worst); the uneven pace and tone of the film (is it supposed to be action-packed or dramatic or funny? For adults or kids or rap-saturated teens?); the nearly 3-hour runtime (1 hour of which is Shia LaBeouf sitting around, waiting to do something) and it’s easy to see why G.I. Joe was a much more harmless and enjoyable popcorn movie, with its trimmer runtime and non-stop action-packed pace.

Besides, when it’s a question of killer robots who look the same vs. killer ninjas who look the same, ninjas win out every time in my book.

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

So, the Winner of the Screen Rant Popcorn Movie Showdown: G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra.

But that’s just what we think. How about you? G.I. Joe or Transformers 2? [Editor's Note: Buckets of popcorn were consumed while writing this post]

[poll id="17"]

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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. Transformers is the best !! did you seen a Transformer from Poland ?? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48C_EvKDVEw

  23. 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.