But with the caveat that it really isn’t subversive at all. I mean, I shouldn’t have expected it to be, but it is a story about an arms dealer who undergoes a radical change in personality. I was hoping for an equally radical challenge to the idea that peace must be achieved by superiority in arms; instead I got a story about how you should blow up weapons, but only the ones that belong to bad guys–preferably while the bad guys are standing on them–with your newer, shinier weapon.

Plus it was lathered in all the typical American movie race issues. White hero, white love interest, brown mentor/sage, brown sidekick, good brown person dies nobly, bad brown people die en masse, hero is only actually challenged by white villain: check! Sigh. Um, and the love interest and her rival were literally the only women with speaking parts in the movie. Except for some strippers?

I kind of like it less after writing all that, but it really was fun. Jon Favreau managed to give himself a twenty-minute cameo.