Everybody who was born after 1975 must have been raised on the A-Team. Right now there’s a good chance that when flipping through the channels on your TV you will stumble upon a rerun of the famous 80s hit show. Together with Knight Rider probably the most iconic show of this decade. The action was perfectly PG, nobody ever got really shot and every episode was exactly the same as the one before. And we loved it, despite not having any character development was ever really done. Face had a new sweetheart every week, Murdock had a new lunatic-gimmick every week, Hannibal a new plan and a disguise every week and BA… well he just pitied fools… every week. Not a lot has been changed for the big budget movie remake. The effects are better, the plot more elaborate, people actually get shot but in the end these are pretty much the same characters we all got to learn during 5 seasons of The A-Team, even though they are played by different actors.
This is an origin story so the movie starts of with most of the A-team members not familiar with each other. In a long prologue they meet each other and wind up becoming a team that serves 80 missions in Iraq. During one of the last missions they get set up for a crime they didn’t commit and go to great lengths for the reminder of the running time to prove their innocence and to get the guy responsible.
The A-Team is pretty fun over-the-top action movie which sadly derails at the end when CGI takes over the entire movie. For two hours this is an action filled movie, which is very witty at the same time. You easily forget or forgive plot-holes like the moment they rescue Murdock from a Mental Hospital and burst through the wall with a jeep. Yet when escaping there is no trace of their initial entry on the premises and they have to drive through a guards station in order to escape.
But the finale of the movie consists of a created landscape when hundreds of cargo-containers fall from a ship and tumble over each other on the docks where several of the good and bad guys reside. Ever seen a man outrun dozens of containers falling around him? I now have.
For everything there should be a plan Hannibal (Neeson) mentions multiple times, and in the end the plan apparently calculated the possibility of all these containers collapsing as the final reveal of the bad guy revolves around one container being lifted by a crane.
The tone is somewhat different compared to the movie. It is still over the top, but much more grittier than the original TV series. The characters of Face and Murdock are practically left unchanged, B.A. now has taken a code of non-violence and refuses to kill people. Neeson’s Hannibal is less grinning that George Peppard was. His raw vocals chew through iconic sentences like “I love it when a plan comes together” like they are a grunt version of James Blunt’s You’re beautiful.
The A-Team is better than any Knight Rider spin-off we got over the past few years and gives me hope for some cool remakes/reboots for movie versions of Airwolf and such. It’s better than other TV shows that have been made into movies over the last couple of years, but it’s not a really great movie, even though I did enjoy it very much.