directed by Joe Carnahan
Over the course of his career, writer slash director Joe Carnahan has hit some bull’s eyes (his film for BMW's The Hire series called Ticker; his balls out debut, Blood, Guts, Bullets and Octane) and has missed some (Smokin’ Aces, ugh), and he sure doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel with his filmic update of The A-Team, the television show about a bunch of Vietnam vets trying to clear their names whilst kicking some bad guy ass. Those of you who actually watched the show faithfully may have some concerns, but who cares? It's not like Carnahan tried to remake In the Heat of the Night with car chases and sexy escapades. He made a film about a show that starred Mr. T, for crap’s sake! And the three who seemed to get it the most are Bradley Cooper (who excels as Face), Sharlto Copley (who brings the crazed hilarity of Murdock to a new and glorious level) and, oddly enough, Patrick Wilson. Wilson has almost too much fun as Lynch, a crooked CIA pencil pusher with grand ambition, and he redeemed himself for his lackluster turn in Zach Snyder’s Watchmen. The film starts with a sort of wartime context (drag), but don’t worry: Carnahan keeps the whole thing light and frantically flashy with a massive counterfeit money plot and framed war heroes. I’m not sure what was going through everyone’s heads during casting, but Liam Neeson was a very odd choice for Hannibal. The first name that comes to mind when you are thinking about casting the swagger of George Peppard’s Hannibal is Neeson? Really? It was like watching a librarian do shots. Maybe Carnahan really dug Taken. Who knows? And Quinton Jackson tries his best to pity every fool he sees, but it just didn’t do it for me. Seriously, what else would you expect from a movie like this? Go see it, already, and have some fun. The art of cinema needs films like Winter’s Bone, but most film snobs fail to realize that it also needs A-Teams as well.