Review - The A-Team

The A-Team (2010), PG-13 - Like many people my age, I grew up watching The A-Team on tv. It started in 1983 and ran for 5 seasons. Outside of a few random re-runs seen during my college years, I'm pretty sure I haven't re-watched any of those old episodes. Having said that, I was still fairly leery of this big screen adaptation going into it. Could a movie made almost 30 years later possibly hit on the same things that made the tv show so popular without destroying the fond memories of the show from my childhood? Quite surprisingly, the answer is yes.

The plot isn't anything ground breaking, but it does the job. The A-Team is comprised of 4 Rangers who complete special missions (quite often of the black-ops variety) for the Army. After an operation goes bad, they are wrongly accused, striped of their ranks and imprisoned. The movie then follows their shenanigans as they break out and proceed to attempt to clear their names by proving their innocence.

The casting turned out to be excellent. Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Sharlto Copley, and Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson all fill the roles of Hannibal, Faceman, Murdock, and BA to a tee. Copley's Murdock actually steals the show in my opinion, consistently reaching another level of insanity and resourcefulness to the mission at hand. Patrick Wilson's CIA Agent Lynch adds some additional humor, and Jessica Biel throws in some sex appeal as well.

There are completely over the top action sequences that defy reality on all levels (trying to fly a tank anyone?), but they fit the tone of the film and really don't seem all that out of place in a movie that succeeds primarily because of one thing: it's just a fun summer action flick. It helps that the original source material was never the most serious thing on television.

I seem to be having a bit of a hard time deciding just how much I actually liked the movie. My expectations were so low going in, I'm not sure if it was really that fun or if it was just so much better than I had anticipated that it seems that way. I can say this with certainty: everyone else that I know who has seen it also thinks that it was a fun and entertaining summer time movie.

If you do make your way to the theater to check out The A-Team, be sure to stay until the end of the credits. There's a nice little cameo from some of the original tv cast afterward.

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