“The A-Team” Movie Review (2010)

6/20/2010 Posted by Admin

“The A-Team”

Movie Review

Directed by Joe Carnahan, written by Carnahan, Brian Bloom and Skip Woods, 117 minutes, rated PG-13.

By Christopher Smith

The new remake of the 1980s television show “The A-Team” really should have been titled “The C- Team.” Joe Carnahan directs from a script he co-wrote with Brian Bloom and Skip Woods, and what they’ve created is your less-than-successful summer Hollywood action blockbuster--big, dumb, loud, ridiculous, over-long, over-stuffed, over-wrought and without the sense that evolution has occured.

At least among some of the suits in Hollywood.

The movie came in second at the box office (the shame!), having lost the top spot to another ‘80s throwback--“The Karate Kid”--which widely was considered to take the lower tier. It didn’t, and for good reason.

In “Kid,” the plot is laced with cliches, sure, but the actors are connected to their characters, something human and real is at stake within its underdog plot, and the fact that it is set in China adds a dimension to the film that the original movie lacked. Visually, this “Karate Kid” is something to behold.

In “The A-Team,” the explosions are what’s here to behold--and how often have we seen their many variations? True, the film’s last big set piece is fun to watch since the film’s CGI team obviously smoked one mother of a bong before going berserk behind their computers, but what comes before it is trite and unbelievable. Thirty minutes could have been shaved off this movie and nobody would have noticed. But in this culture of bigger must be better, we get all of that padding along with weak quips and stale laughs.

The fact that the movie is a middling piece of mediocrity isn’t without surprise, even if Carnahan is responsible for directing such classics as “Smokin’ Aces,” a movie that left some of us blowing smoke rings into our seats.

Here, he has assembled a solid team of actors, four of whom play Iraq veterans and are members of the A-Team, an elite fighting force of misfits.

There’s Bradley Cooper as Templeton “Face” Peck (he’s all smiles and suntans), Liam Neeson as the cigar-chomping Hannibal Smith (he’s all frowns and furrows), Sharlto Copley as “Howlin’ Mad” Murdock (he’s just annoying) and Quinton “Rampage” Johnson as B.A. Baracus (he’s…a softy?).

Also onboard, apparently to provide a shot of sex appeal, is Jessica Biel, who struts throughout the movie like a diva on a catwalk. She’s Face’s ex-girlfriend. Bad blood boils between them. Naturally, since she also is a government agent, the uniform she favors most is an impossibly tight leather outfit that must have left the poor thing fainting from hunger throughout the shoot.

The plot goes like this: The members of the A-Team are framed for counterfeiting. Prison calls, but so does the need to clear their names and reveal the truth. And so they bust out of those prisons and re-connect in an effort to do justice proud. But trouble looms. And daring escapes prevail. Things explode--and then they explode again. Patrick Wilson shows up to be a two-timing nemesis. Arabs of ill-intent linger along the periphery because that’s what Arabs do in mainstream Hollywood movies. Gandhi is quoted--with levity. In one scene, this literally happens.

And the world weeps.

Some will question whether the plot has been covered here. It has. We could explore the fact that not a lick of it adds up and that the characters are dishrags up on the screen, but why bother? “The A-Team” is a boring romp that tries to capture the kitschy fun of the television series, but which mostly misses its mark. It feels as if Carnahan made the movie while walking in his sleep. Here’s an idea--let’s shake him so he can face the reviews.

Grade: C-

View the trailer for "The A-Team" below. What did you think of the movie?

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  1. Hrushi said...

    Sad that you feel its boring.

  2. Rick said...

    I second Hrushi.

    Your review belongs on newsprint old man. The internets doesn't afraids of you "missing the mark" when you say a movie "misses the mark" when you are clueless about what "mark" the movie was set off to hit.

    Though you maybe outdated with your movie expectations, and completely obsessed with movies that entertain in an "intellectual" way, the internet is never gonna give you up. And we'll never let you down with our eagerness to post critical remarks.

    Also, an hero please.

  3. Tom Graczkowski said...

    "Smoked one mother of a bong..." that actually cracked me up. About the movie though, the trailer pretty much sums up that it's going to be loud and dumb Charlie Angels style. So, really I think that was the goal in the film makers minds. Secondly, it's summer so what else would you expect? Let's face it most of intelectual cinema is not really all that entertainming.



  4. yulianti said...

    i thinks this movie is really cool and funny… can you imagine that someone who very strong, scared with flying??
    and he's flying with someone that crazy, it's must be funny.. :D

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