Movie Review

The A-Team

There Is No Plan B
The A-Team Movie Poster

US Release Date: 06-11-2010

Directed by: Joe Carnahan


  • Liam Neeson
  • Hannibal
  • Bradley Cooper
  • Lt. Templeton 'Faceman' Peck
  • Jessica Biel
  • Charisa Sosa
  • Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson
  • B.A. Baracus
  • Sharlto Copley
  • Murdock
  • Patrick Wilson
  • Lynch
  • Gerald McRaney
  • General Morrison
  • Henry Czerny
  • Director McCready
  • Yul Vazquez
  • General Javier Tuco
  • Brian Bloom
  • Pike
  • Jon Hamm
  • Lynch
Average Stars:
Reviewed on: June 17th, 2010
The A-Team, taking down the treacherous white male American scumbags.

The A-Team, taking down the treacherous white male American scumbags.

The A-Team is over-the-top, action packed, balls out fun.  Sure it is hardly realistic, but if you just get comfortable and enjoy the ride without questioning the plausibility you will be entertained. Find your inner child that accepts the unaccaptable.

As the movie opens, Hannibal and Face already know each other.  They meet B.A. in a wild coincidence.  Just accept it.  They pick Murdock up at a mental hospital.  The movie then makes a great decision to skip eight years to the Iraq war.  There is no getting-to-know-each-other scenes.  The audience knows these guys and little amount of time is wasted re-introducing them.

They get set-up during a mission to capture some mint plates and a billion dollars in forged American dollars.  They get arrested and imprisoned, but not for long.  They regroup, and set out to capture the bad guys and restore their good name.

The action scenes are gloriously ridiculous.  My favorite is the tank flying scene.  You have to see it.  The Michael Bay moment comes at the climax when an entire cargo ship gets destroyed.  It is straight out of a comic book, but all the more fun because it is on the big screen.

I was able to overlook the plot holes, and was thus rewarded with mindless fun.  What I was not able to overlook was who the bad guys are.  The A-Team is made up of Americans and are the good guys, but can you guess who the bad guys are.  The movie takes place partially in Iraq and Germany. It could have been some foreign terrorists or foreign organizations, but this is liberal Hollywood.  The bad guys are all suit wearing white American men, who else would they be?

Yes, this is not a realistic film, but I am so damn tired of Hollywood stereotyping rich white men as the root of all evil.  It was Middle Eastern men who destroyed the twin towers and committed nearly every other act of terrorism of the past 20 years, yet Hollywood does not have the balls to portray them as such.  They would rather offend fellow Americans, than a violent religion bent on taking over the world.  Is Hollywood run by money from The Middle East?

Reviewed on: July 14th, 2013
Jessica Biel and Bradley Cooper in The A-Team.

Jessica Biel and Bradley Cooper in The A-Team.

This adaptation of the popular 1980's television show isn't nearly as much fun as Eric has written. There is plenty of action, but it's so cartoon-like that there is a complete absence of anything resembling tension. Long before the movie ever gets to the tank scene Eric mentioned, it becomes clear that these guys can do anything they want, when they want, without regard to any obstacle, be it military, technical or gravity. These guys can't lose and so the ending is inevitable, but we must sit through 2 hours of nonsense to get there. I'm baffled by how anyone older than the age of 12 could find this entertaining.

A planned big screen A-Team movie had been in the works since the mid-1990s when Hollywood first began the practice of regularly reviving old television shows as movies. Many different names were thrown around over the years as attached or considered for the project, such as Bruce Willis as Hannibal and Woody Harrelson as Murdock. John Singleton was attached as director for awhile, until the movie went into turnaround. While Singleton was the director, Ice Cube was the most likely candidate to play BA Baracus, the role originated by Mr. T. With such a long time between conception and execution, you'd hope a great script could be written, but unfortunately more time seems to have been spent on casting than writing.

Fans of the original series are thrown a few bones. Original cast members Dwight Schultz and Dirk Benedict make cameo appearances. The original series theme is also played during the film, although not very often. A more subtle Easter egg tribute is paid in the credits of a fictional film Murdock watches in prison. The credits listed include the names Reginald Barclay and G.F. Starbuck. Reginald Barclay is the name of the character played by Schultz on Star Trek: The Next Generation, while G.F. Starbuck refers to the character Benedict played on the original Battlestar Galactica.

Benedict later regretted his appearance, saying "You'll miss me if you blink. I kind of regret doing it because it's a non-part. They wanted to be able to say, 'Oh yeah, the original cast are in it,' but we're not. It is three seconds. It's kind of insulting." Mr. T was offered a cameo, but he turned it down. Several contradictory statements about the film were attributed to him, but his attorney later stated that the actor had not yet seen it. George Peppard, the original Hannibal, died in 1994 and so was presumably not even offered the chance to appear.

The only thing this film really has going for it is the action, which is pretty much non-stop. As I wrote however, it comes without any sense of suspense, which is the main ingredient that makes action entertaining. Without it, it's just spectacle. In terms of eye candy, the film provides Jessica Biel and a ripped Bradley Cooper for whichever gender gets your motor running.

Considering the source material, the producers remained faithful to its tone. They didn't try to transform it into a serious or gritty action film. The original was silly and so is this version.

Reviewed on: July 19th, 2013
Bradley Cooper, Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson, Sharlto Copley, and Liam Neeson are The A-Team.

Bradley Cooper, Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson, Sharlto Copley, and Liam Neeson are The A-Team.

I never watched the original A-Team television show so I was only vaguely familiar with the characters. I knew George Peppard's Hannibal Smith and everyone knew who Mr. T was in the mid-1980s. But I was 16 when the series premiered and at the time I thought it was too juvenile for my tastes. Now having watched this feature length reboot I can unequivocally state that my gut instinct was spot on. I agree Scott, anyone above the age of 12 should stay away from this one.

As for Eric's complaint that Hollywood always seems to cast rich white men as the villains, I heartily agree (not really). I mean haven't rich white men suffered enough? But seriously, I think you would have a more persuasive argument if 90% of the heroes in movies weren't also white men. Just look at this movie for example. You have a token woman and a token black man in a cast of mostly all white males.

The action scenes provide mindless eye candy but the plot is ridiculously convoluted. Liam Neeson (who makes any movie better with his formidable presence and steely demeanor) said about this movie in 2012, “I watched it about two months ago and I found it a little confusing and I was in the thing. I just couldn’t figure out who was who and what’s been done to him and why, a little bit.” Thanks for clearing that up Liam.

The formula this movie follows was already old when the series began 30 years ago. A team of specially trained agents comes together and ends up going rogue after a covert operation goes bad and now they must work to capture the traitorous agent who set them up in order to clear their names. How many movies could that be describing?

Despite a decent cast and some eye-popping action sequences The A-Team is strictly D-list.

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