Don’t you just love it when a remake comes together?
Revisions, such as A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010), have been getting rather bad press of late, largely because most of them have suffered somewhat from being crap.
Deep joy, then, when a director (Joe Carnahan, he of the excellent Smokin’ Aces (2006)) first-time writer (Brian Bloom) and an ensemble cast led by Liam Neeson combine to offer an action flick that engages guts, brains and funny bone – and the result would be The A-Team (2010).
Most of us, surely, can cast our minds back to just how much fun the original TV series, which ran from 1983-87, actually was, and it is this quality that has obviously served as the inspiration for the efforts of Carnahan, Neeson et al.
The gist is as simple as the original series – four Iraq War veterans, Hannibal Smith (Neeson), Lt. Templeton ‘Faceman’ Peck (Bradley Cooper), B.A. Baracus (Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson) and Murdock (Patrick Wilson) are just about the best military unit to be found, until they are framed for murder.
All escape within six months, and swear vengeance (of the largely non-violent variety, for those who remember the series) on those who have set them up. Just remember, though, that B.A. ‘ain’t going on no plane, fool!’
The characterizations are first-rate – real care has obviously been taken to pay due homage to the original cast, while at the same time a modern-day urgency has been added to the (largely excellent) action sequences.
At the same time, the original’s innocence has also been largely preserved – while the characters are all as likeable as before, there’s still no way that any ‘serious’ filmgoer can be expected to buy how the four get into (and out of) the scrapes that they do.
No matter, though – this is fun, fun, fun, and a great start to the blockbuster season.