Review: ‘The Losers’

Thursday, April 22 by

The Losers
PG-13, 95m., 2010
Cast: Jeffery Dean Morgan, Idris Elba, Columbus Short, Chris Evans with Zoe Saldana and Jason Patric
Directed by Sylvain White
Screenplay by Peter Berg and James Vanderbilt based upon graphic novel series, “Ante Up” written by Andy Diggle and illustrations by Jock
 

The Losers is a wham-bam-thank-you-mama style of action flick where logic and brains are left on the bullet ridden floor.

The plot seems like directly from the classic 80s TV show “The A-Team," however, on steroids. A group of wisecracking CIA black ops going by the names of Pooch (Columbus Short), Roque (Idris Elba), Cougar(Óscar Jaenada) and Jensen (Chris Evans) are led by grey haired compatriot Clay (Jeffery Dean Morgan, who looks even sweatier and grizzled than in Watchman) into an assignment in Bolivia, where they are double crossed and mistaken for dead.

To clear their names and make it back home, the gang must travel the globe with the mysterious Aisha (Zoe Saldana, looking sexier and more bad-ass than ever before) searching for the uber Bond-type villain Max (Jason Patric in his most gleefully malevolent role to date), all the while unloading boxes of bullets and explosives wherever they go.     

Keeping this movie from total “Micheal Bay Mayhem” is the fun-faired nature that the rag-tag group of actors bring to the absurd plot. They can shout off their signature one-liners and keep their cool in check by not looking back at explosions.
     
While we have seen much of this “men on a mission” story before, director Sylvain White and script writers Peter Berg and James Vanderbilt from the Vertigo comic series by Andy Diggle and Jock know this and they keep the movie speeding along with series of decent action eye candy and surprises that are in tune with their 80s action spirit.

The low point of the film comes in the form of its music, which, like most whiz-bang action-fests, is filled with blasting pop tunes. The Losers soundtrack seems to be stuck on shuffle with action scenes and stripteases going through a vomitorium of techno beats and 80s tunes. The opening action sequence spews out seven songs in less than five minutes, from “Black Betty” to “Small Town Girl."
            
The Losers may not be more than a 90 minute cartoon exercise but it gets the job done well for now, until The A-Team movie arrives in June, Predators in July, and then The Expendables in August.

Grade: B-