Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Movie Review: The A-Team

A week ago, I went to see the blockbuster, big-screen remake of the 80's cult TV hit A-Team, and now I can barely remember a single thing about it. That makes writing a review of the film both difficult and somewhat unnecessary. But, just as a writing exercise, I'll try to come up with something anyway.

Here are a couple details I do recall. Liam Neeson stars as Hannibal, an Army Ranger who is no relation to the guy with the elephants. In a fairly action-packed if arbitrary opening sequence, we see how Hannibal accidentally puts together his expert squad while battling some evil Mexican druglords, a plot point that I'm guessing only intended about half of the subtext it has acquired since the script was written.

Fast forward eight years (in the movie, I mean -- don't actually jump to 2018 for the rest of the review, it's right here) and we're in Iraq, meaning this movie could take place theoretically at any point in either the last decade or our vast and infinite future. Long story short, the A-Team does some stuff and there's a set-up and Major Dad is involved and then my eyes glazed over as a warm blanket of thoughtlessness swept me away until I awoke, pale and shivering several days later in the shadow of a dumpster behind the local KFC.

That's pretty much what A-Team is like: it's pretty fun, pretty fast paced and entirely unnecessary. Compared to this summer's other big studio releases, that means it's really awesome. Compared to good movies, well, why would you even make that comparison to begin with?

Fans of the TV show will almost certainly like it, as will fans of Bradley Cooper's always-visible abs; and pretty much anyone who doesn't require higher cognative abilities to enjoy a film will at least not regret spending the money on this one. If you're looking for the next Bourne Ultimatum, well, this is not your movie. If you want to see something that's got all the cheese factor of The Expendables but probably only half the suckiness, then go to it, home slice.

My Grades: As far as capturing the spirit of the TV show, the movie version gets an A-. As far as that being a desirable goal for a movie to strive for, this can only get a C at best. Overall summer film grade: B-. Not as bad as it should have been.

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