A Dwayne Johnson Mega-Flop Is Climbing The Netflix Charts

Dwayne Johnson's G.I. Joe: Retaliation is in the Netflix Top Ten.

By Douglas Helm | Updated

dwayne johnson

It’s not often that you hear “Dwayne Johnson” and “flop” used in the same sentence (not counting his DCU film Black Adam), but a flop is exactly what you’d call his 2013 film G.I. Joe: Retaliation. Of course, streaming can sometimes boost a forgotten flop back into the public consciousness, and the action flick managed to climb into Netflix’s Top Ten this week, according to FlixPatrol. You can check it out on the streamer now if you’re looking for some early 2010s-flavored action.

Now to be clear, G.I. Joe: Retaliation wasn’t necessarily a financial flop for Dwayne Johnson, but it was a flop in the sense that nobody really liked it. It managed to pull in $375.7 million worldwide total against a budget of $130–$155 million, so the studios probably got over the terrible reviews pretty quickly. Still, outside of some solid action scenes, there’s not too much to this movie based on the popular toy line.

G.I. Joe: Retaliation sees most of the Joes killed off in the beginning, leading their surviving comrades to seek revenge against Cobra. Along with Dwayne Johnson, the cast includes Lee Byung-hun, Ray Park, Jonathan Pryce, Channing Tatum, Arnold Vosloo, Luke Bracey, Robert Baker, D. J. Cotrona, Adrianne Palicki, Ray Stevenson, and Bruce Willis. Jon M. Chu directed the film from a screenplay by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick.


G.I. Joe: Retaliation is a sequel to G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, which also had financial success. There were talks of a third movie with Dwayne Johnson returning, but the Henry Golding-starring Snake Eyes was released in 2021 instead. That film ended up being a financial failure, so there’s really no word on when we might expect to see another G.I. Joe film, much less one that stars Johnson.

Of course, Dwayne Johnson is probably too busy now for any new G.I. Joe films anyway. Along with his various business ventures like his tequila and the XFL, Johnson has a huge slate of upcoming projects. Johnson also produces most of his projects, so he has that going for him too.

Still, G.I. Joe: Retaliation might be a good way for Dwayne Johnson fans to hold themselves over until his next film, which should be Red One. Red One doesn’t have an official release date yet, but it’s scheduled to come out sometime in 2023 (presumably around the holidays since JK Simmons is in it and playing Santa Claus). The plot of Red One is being kept under wraps, but the film is directed by Jake Kasdan and also stars Chris Evans, Kiernan Shipka, Lucy Liu, Mary Elizabeth Ellis, Nick Kroll, and Kristofer Hivju.

Dwayne Johnson is also hopping on the profitable Disney live-action remake train as it was announced that he would be making an adaptation of his hit film Moana and returning as Maui. Johnson will be producing the movie with Seven Bucks Productions along with Dany Garcia and Hiram Garcia. Jared Bush, who wrote the screenplay for the original, will also be back to co-write the live-action remake with Dana Ledoux Miller.

It will be interesting to see if Dwayne Johnson can help make his live-action adaptation of Moana as successful as the original. Disney has several live-action remakes on the way, including this month’s The Little Mermaid and the upcoming adaptations of Snow White and Lilo & Stitch. After Johnson’s plans for the DCU were left behind with James Gunn and Safran taking over, it looks like Johnson will be looking to expand his other franchises.

In the meantime, you can revisit Dwayne Johnson’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation on Netflix this weekend. It’ll take you back to a time before Johnson was one of the biggest movie stars in the world. It may not be his best effort, but it’s not necessarily his worst, either.