Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Five Minutes Watching: The A-Team

I don't watch a lot of movies, because I don't have time. But at the end of day of work, then class, then reading for the next class, and writing down what I wrote so I can remember it all, I'll turn on one of them pay channels I have for just such an emergency and catch five minutes of something.

Utilizing my new found freedom, and as a present for doing my homework, and because it was on, I watched the A-Team movie the other night, starring Liam Neeson as the venerable Hannibal Smith. Er, was George Clooney not available? Maybe even Bruce Willis in a bad wig? Because the guys who played Face, Murdock and B.A were on point, but Liam Neeson just looked out of place. Like he was trying too hard. Like he wasn't playing Hannibal, but doing an impersonation of George Peppard as Hannibal. There were times he even looked like Al Bundy playing action hero. And this selection alone lowered the whole thing to parody.

That and the final showdown, but more on that later.

Now, to be clear, the writing for the film version of the A-Team actually wasn't horrible. Considering how bad Hollywood has done some other ideas, a great deal of it actually made "action movie sense", in that it worked as long as it stays in its own little universe.
The trying to "fly the tank" bit was good, and the some of the set pieces were nice, although the obvious (and I mean really obvious) use of CGI kind of snatched away some of the thunder.

But there were one too many coincidences. One too many shots of Liam Neeson looking like he ate something bad. And the use of the new Hollywood hot villain - the rogue agent. Hasn't this character been the antagonist of ALL three Mission Impossible and the Jason Bourne movies, as well as every other spy movie for the past five years? Maybe we could have like a villain type villain going forward. At least James Bond tries to shoot somebody NOT on the same payroll. I will admit it was a nice bit of writing to work the rouge agent trope into the origin story trope, but I'm really kind of tired of that fighting against an insider concept.

That concept, and the way they did the final showdown. First, it was Face's plan and not Hannibal's which was the first problem. Then in the middle of it you have that obviously CGI mess that makes no, and I mean NO sense. I realize there was the ability to print your own money at stake - although how long you could get away with NEW small faced hundreds is anyone's guess, but all the running through the streets shooting at people? The explosions at the end (they blew up a ship!) should garnered some interest, from some kind of law enforcement. Even if they had a stand down order from rogue agent. Somebody should have noticed. Somebody. Anybody?

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