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Archive for June 10th, 2010

The Losers

Just a small town girl, Living in a lonely world, She took the midnight train going anywhere, Just a city boy, Born and raised in South Detroit, He took the midnight train going anywhere

On a routine mission in Bolivia a team of five special forces soldiers (Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Idris Elba, Chris Evans, Columbus Short, Óscar Jaenada) decide to disobey orders and try to abort a mission in order to save some children. They are quickly double crossed, set up and assumed dead. They decide to get even and clear their names but all they have to go on is a name, Max (Jason Patric). Help comes in the surprising shape of Aisha (Zoe Saldana) who offers to help them in exchange for their mutual enemy Max. Its not clear what Aisha’s agenda or motivation is but they don’t have any other options.

Based on a DC comic that ran for 32 issues from August 2003 to March 2006 that in turn was losly based on a world war II set comic of the same name from the 1970’s. Interestingly the movie has more of a video game style, it is made up of a series of action scenes that often have a planed outcome. There is a small amount of plot development between these set pieces. That is the only real problem with the movie, the characters are really under developed. The actors do what they can: Jeffrey Dean Morgan could be perceived as a poor mans George Clooney but has the charisma to rise above it; Idris Elba has the most clichéd role but does a good job with it: Chris Evans has the most comic role, Columbus Short and Óscar Jaenada are underused. Of the rest of the cast Jason Patric (who I still struggle to see as anyone other than Michael from The Lost Boys) is clearly having fun as a villain he is no Alan Rickman; Zoe Saldana is drop dead gorgeous and handles the action well but is a little bland, at least she isn‘t blue.

It is unfair to criticise a movie without pinpointing how it could be better and that’s the thing about The Losers, within the context of the genre it doesn’t do a huge amount wrong. It could be more funny, it could have a better plot but if it were a little less dumb it would probably be less fun too. The movie ends in such a way that could easily accommodate a sequel and taking its story loosely from the first six comic editions of the comic book there is plenty of source material to work with. With a relatively small £25million budget it probably needs to gross around $70million to make a sequel viable, early indications suggest it may not reach that figure. But before that happens we have the higher profile The A-Team to come next month, the losers has set the bar can the A-Team raise it? It will probably take more money regardless of how good it is.

 

A fun and entertaining movie but far from a great one, hard to dislike but equally as hard to love. It won’t make my top ten at the end of the year but that doesn’t make it a bad movie. And why the Journey lyrics? “Don’t Stop Believing” is used in the movie, that has to be a good thing!

Three Stars out of Five

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