The A-Team Extended Cut Blu-Ray Review - Mania.com



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Info:

  • Blu-ray: The A-Team
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Starring: Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Jessica Biel, Quinton Jackson, Sharlto Copley
  • Written By: Skip Woods
  • Directed By: Joe Carnahan
  • Distributor: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
  • Original Year of Release: 2010
  • Extras: See Below
  • Series:

The A-Team Extended Cut Blu-Ray Review

Scattershot take on 80’s Hit TV Series

By Tim Janson     December 30, 2010


The A-Team 2010
© 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

 

The A-Team is of course based on the popular 1980’s action TV series and basically serves as a precursor, showing how the team first met and then served during the second Gulf War, retconning the history of the TV show.  The group: Hannibal Smith (Liam Neeson), Templeton “Face” Peck (Bradley Cooper), B.A. Baracus (Rampage Jackson), and “Howling Mad” Murdock (Sharlto Copley), become an elite Special Forces unit during the war.  As U.S. forces are poised to pull out of Baghdad , the group is contacted by a CIA Agent who wants the team to recover U.S. Treasury plates that were stolen by Iraqi insurgents.  Captain Charissa Sosa (Jessica Biel) who is working directly for the Department of Defense warns the group not to go after the plates.  Meanwhile operatives from a private security firm Black Forest are also after the plates.  Convoluted enough for you?  It gets worse…
 
The Team is double-crossed and their commanding officer General Morrison (Gerald McRaney) is killed leaving the A-Team to take the blame.  They are court-martialed and imprisoned for their trumped upped crimes.  Six months later the team later escapes and is determined to find the stolen plates and clear their names.  Now this all takes about an hour of the extended cut of the film.  In other words the thirty second voice-over from the TV show takes an hour to play out onscreen.  At two hours and fifteen minutes the extended cut is a good thirty minutes too long.  The entire opening sequence which features Hannibal escaping from corrupt Mexican Police (and boy is that redundant or what), rescuing Face, and meeting B.A. and Murdock just by happenstance was unneeded and completely silly to boot.  B.A. conveniently is driving his van in the same Mexican desert where Hannibal just escaped from…right!
 
A silly, confusing script derails the film from the opening credits on…a scorecard should have been supplied to keep track of the scores of characters and sub-plots.  Jessica Biel is completely out of her element trying to play a tough Army Captain and love interest of Face.  Even worse is the treatment the character of B.A. Baracus is given.  His fear of flying is played up but after his incarceration he becomes a pacifist and refuses to kill…This from a guy who was an Army Ranger and Special Ops member.  Ok, we can accept that his conscience got the better of him but is that what we’re looking for in a slam-bang popcorn action film?  This isn’t the Hurt Locker!  Oh and of course B.A. Finally shakes his “non-killing” funk in the film’s climax which is supposed to be a feel good moment I suppose.
 
Neeson, Cooper, and Jackson all do admirable jobs with their characters although Neeson isn’t nearly so smart-alecky as George Peppard was.  On the other hand, Copley is way too obnoxious in his portrayal of Murdock.  Director Joe Carnahan molds the film like he was using a pair of oven mitts.  There’s no hint of detail or subtlety.  He tries to tightrope walk the line between the series’ inherent playfulness and cheesiness and trying to update the film for a modern audience and ends up doing neither with a great deal of success.
 
Blu-Ray Extras
 
The disc comes with an interactive Picture-in-picture commentary track with Director Joe Carnahan.  The track only applies to the theatrical cut of the film but includes lots of pop-up trivia about the various weapons and vehicles used in the film as well as behind-the-scenes footage.
 
Plan of Attack (29:00) is a standard making of documentary featuring interviews with the cast and Director Joe Carnahan
 
Character Chronicles (23:00) this featurette takes a closer look at each of the members of the A-Team as well as Jessica Biel’s character and their differences from the TV versions.
 
Deleted Scenes (9:00)  There are six deleted scenes in all but none of which adds anything of great importance.  We do get to see WWE wrestler the Great Khali in a scene with B.A. that was left on the cutting room floor. 
 
Gag Reel (7:00)
 
Visual Effects Before and After (7:00) takes a look at several scenes before and after the visual effects.
 
A-Team Theme Mash-up Montage (2:00) several fight, crash, explosion scenes edited together with the classic A-Team theme
 

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

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spiderhero 12/30/2010 4:28:43 AM

I have to disdagree with this review. Was the movie absurd? Yes. But so was the TV show. The show & movie are fun, plain & simple. Over the top, ridiculous. I loved every minute of it. My wife did also & she rarely goes t movies & usually hates anything even remotely dumb. I will be buying this when I get a chance.

CaptAmerica04 12/30/2010 7:32:52 AM

 I didn't see this in the theater.  The trailer alone showed me that this was going to be an insult to the memory of one of the great '80s TV shows (not to mention a great actor like George Peppard).  I sure as heck am not seeing it now.

NerdLunchCT 12/30/2010 7:49:09 AM

Count me in with spiderhero. People who don't like this movie apparently don't get this movie. I'm a huge fan of the original show and can understand trepidation about not wanting something to come along that disrespects the original, but I feel like this did it proud. I wish it had done better. I'd very much love a sequel.

gauleyboy420 12/30/2010 8:10:26 AM

This movie was one of two movies that got me out of the house this summer. IT WAS AWESOME!!!! Got it for christmas, and have watched it twice in the last week!!!!

 

Sorry Tim, your review is waaaaaay off with this one. Go watch some old A-Team on Hulu... You'll see this movie was a perfect adaption

LocoLobo73 12/30/2010 9:07:15 AM

I have to strongly disagree, with this review, this was a great popcorn flick that was not meant to be taken seriously at all, and anyone who thought it should be was bound for disappointment. I felt this was actually one of the more enjoyable movies of 2010. The cast was great and did a fine job in honoring the original show. I went into it not expecting to like it and walked out Loving it. In fact im not sure Ive talked to anyone who has seen it and didnt like it. I would give The A'Team a strong B

wish 12/30/2010 9:34:10 AM

It's too easy to make an opinion of a film appear as a bad review.  I'm sure the reason why people like Chris Nolan and David Fincher aren't making these movies is because they can only be a certain level of film.  And for the level of film this particular movie lies in it was perfect.  It was very funny, fast paced with good though predictable action and very enjoyable characters played by very talented actors.  Some of the points you list such as the chance meeting in the dessert and opening escape scene being silly and unlikely..........well.............name a film where that doesn't happen.......seriously, isn't that what most films are?  A moment in time where things seem to all go a certain way resulting in.......one hell of a story!  Hard to believe, but it really did happen!!!  that kind of stuff, why act surprised?  If you don't like the film it's fine to say so and even better if you have reasons but don't try to pass it off as being flaws in a film.  It made lots of money and has lots of fans, it would be ignorant and irrational to say that it was as unsuccessfull as your review implies.

redhairs99 12/30/2010 11:18:21 AM

Well, I tried reposting my original comments 4 times, since that doesn't seem to be working, I'll just simplify my original comments and dumb them down as well.  Tim, sorry, but I gotta disagree.  This film was just plain absurd fun.  Murdock and BA were awesome together.  It's not Citizen Kane but it wasn't supposed to be either.

Oh, and FU Mania!  This disappearing posts business is ridiculous!

hanso 12/30/2010 1:10:16 PM

I saw this at the movies and liked it.  Bought it on Blu Ray and now I like it even more.  I'm not a big fan of over the top movies, like some of the action scenes in The A-Team (the tank scene for example) but everything in this movie just works for me.   Reason is I love the chemistry between the four guys.  They are always having a blast and that's what makes me overlook some of the things Janson pointed out.

I'm hoping we get a sequel and that Jon Hamm is the bad guy.

Alpha, Mike, Foxtrot!  Think about it. 

tjanson 12/30/2010 1:57:32 PM

Wish...Yes it would be ignorant to say the film was unsuccessful...that's why I didn't say it. I didn't like the film but neither did I hate it, hence a "C" rating. It was one of the more poorly directed films I've seen in 2010. If you choose to over look that fact, that's your choice. And just because a film makes a lot of money doesn't necessarily make it a good film, just as a film that does poorly at the boxoffice means its a bad film.

kenderoreander 12/30/2010 4:31:40 PM

actually this film did not make a lot of money and was mostly reviewed as bad. which is strange because it seems to be one of the only big screen adaptations of a classic tv series that got it right. no it wasnt exactly the same as the series but it was very true to the sprit of it. i;m glad to see there others out there who loved this. even if you didnt like the adaptation or the kind of movie the one thing you cant actually say is that it wasnt well made. and if that scene with the tank wasnt tight roping i dont know what is. i was surprised at how well this film managed to be true to the spriit of the series and bring some real depth even while playing some of the depth as cheesy and tongue in cheek. the only thing that would have made this better would be to have the original actors. but thats not really the point of this thing is it? besides they might all be a little old. and its not like anybody ever really had a chance up against dwight schultz as murdock anyway.

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