I went and saw The A-Team last night, and I have to say I enjoyed myself. It was exactly what I expected, nothing more, nothing less. It had plenty of nods to the series, while modernizing it and making it different enough that you didn’t feel like you’d seen it all before. Glad I went. There are spoilers after the jump, read on if you dare…
Anyway, they hit up a Military hospital for a pilot, which is how they encounter HM ‘Howlin Mad’ Murdock, who they find off the psych ward in a stolen doctor’s coat, stitching up a bullet wound on BA in a Harry Potter-esque lightning bolt pattern. One harrowing helo ride later (nearly dropping BA out of the open door, instilling his fear of flight), they’ve lured the evil General over the border, where he gets blasted by an F-22. Nice.
8 years and 80 missions later, the team does a job in Baghdad (stealing back US $100 printing plates) that goes wrong when they get back to base. You next get to see not one but four jailbreaks (as the government was smart enough to put the team in widely seperated prisons) and they are back ‘on the jazz’.
It may be because I grew up with the show, but I loved the references to the old version, whether it’s drugging BA to get him on planes, BA throwing a dude, Murdock’s hand puppet, the iconic van, and more. There are some great action set pieces, Murdock stealing the show, as crazy as ever, and Liam Neeson definitely looks like a genuine tough guy (though the voice is off). Face is smooth, no doubt, but too much of his scamming is off-screen. I’d love to see more of him talking his way into and out of places, getting the gear they needed, and so on.
One thing I’m curious about is how they are going to do a sequel. It’s not a guarantee, especially considering the somewhat lackluster box office numbers. My buddies and I are calling a drug lord villain though, which could keep up with the ‘helping a small town/the little guy’ motif of the show, while still being a big enough deal for some kick-ass action scenes. I’d watch. I had a lot of fun with this one, not very deep but that works considering the source.