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>> Friday, April 23, 2010

A-Team who...?

The Losers is a movie about people who are not actually losers (well maybe a bit, but not in the traditional sense). No, they are a group of ex-military folk who literally lose the battle they playing between the good (them) and the evil (a guy named Max [Jason Patric]).

The not-yet losers are sent to destroy a village of bad guys of some sort, when they realize these guys have a group of twenty or so kids as hostages. This noble group of soldiers consists of Clay (played by Javiar Bardem look-a-like Jeffrey Dean Morgan), Jensen (upcoming Captain America’s Chris Evans), Roque (Idris Elba), Pooch (Columbus Short) and Cougar (Oscar Jaenada). Once the group finds out there are children in the compound, they call off the pending air strike. The heartless, faceless Max then proceeds to come on the radio and explain this will not be an option. The team then heads into the camp anyways, successfully rescues the children and puts them onto a helicopter. The team stays behind because they are informed they can’t fit in the bird with all the kids. They celebrate the victory until the helicopter they were meant to be in explodes killing all souls inside of her and leaving the soldiers to fake their own death and disappear forever. Or do they?.....

A few years pass and we catch up with the team somewhere south of the equator where an opportunity arises courtesy of Aisha (Avatar’s Zoe Saldana). She knows where to find Max and gives the in-hiding soldiers a chance to get their sweet, sweet revenge. And of course, what kind of movie would it be if they didn’t take the opportunity?

The Losers is the comic book world’s angle on the A-Team, which the movie version of is being released in June. It may have been thrown together relatively quickly, and is certainly set up to be a competing series and money maker, but it’s actually not too bad. As expected Chris Evans provides a lot of the funny lines and actions in the movie, including the infamous trailer scene where he shoots three guards with his finger-gun (it’s actually his soldier buddy with a sniper rifle). The scene is expected but still delivers laughs. The acting in this film is fine, and there is certainly no problem with the action. It’s some of the best real-life action since Casino Royale or the Bourne movies. The movie overall is like those movies, mixed with Tropic Thunder and Ocean’s Eleven (2001). So you can see where the fun in it kind of comes from here.

The problem with this movie is the lack of originality. You watch this movie and feel like you’ve seen if before. It’s not ‘bad familiar’, but it’s not ‘good original’ either. But what can you really expect from the director of I’ll Always Know What You Did Last Summer? Amongst all the movies out and coming out it’s most likely to get lost. If a sequel was planned or is coming, it will probably be released in the slower winter season, and a couple of the characters may be replaced by different actors, or written out entirely due to this films inevitable lacklustre performance.

Overall, The Losers is a fun movie, and it’s too bad it won’t be seen by more people. Part of it is poor timing for its release, and part of it is the unoriginality and lack of prior fan base. I am giving this movie a slight open door, but maybe see it at a discount theatre or on DVD, where it may pick up some steam by that point. But I wouldn’t be surprised to see it in the Wal-Mart $5 DVD bin by next summer, either.

*Stills courtesy of DC Entertainment


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