“The Losers” did a little bit of winning, more than the normal losing I imagine they’re used to anyway. Based on the comic book of the same name, Peter Berg teamed with James Vanderbilt to write the screenplay that Sylvain White (director of such hits as “Stomp the Yard” and “Trois 3: The Escort”) directed, the film is based on a small U.S. Special Forces unit that is betrayed by their CIA handler Max, leaving them for dead and with no other choice than to team with the mysterious “Aisha” they set out to uncover the identity of Max and clear their names.
Why you’ll like this:
funny; fun characters; semi fun action
I haven’t read the comic book, but I can easily imagine the dialogue was nearly verbatim, because the obvious point of the entire film is to just have fun without ever taking anything too seriously. In fact, the very first scene that introduces Saladana’s character Aisha makes absolutely no story-sense, she pretends to try to hook up with Colonel Clay (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) which ends up in a rather sizable fight sequence resulting in plenty of damage only to have the end of the scene reveal that she’s just there to help and poses no threat at all. That certainly isn’t the only off-putting plot point, but once you let go of the idea that this is supposed to cleanly connect dots then the fun can begin.
The comedy is pretty entertaining, at least when it involves Chris Evans and Columbus Short, everyone else is rather mediocre, including Jason Patric. Patric’s comedic line reminded me (strangely) of the police detectives in the early “Spawn” comics, hey, I said it was strange. However, Evans’ “Jensen” and Columbus Short’s “Pooch” deliver some really great chemistry and strong performances with comedic timing and showcase some depth of talent. The rest of the cast doesn’t seem as focused on the laughs, but still manage to add to the overall fun outlandish atmosphere.
The other character in the film seemed to be the locations. Whether they actually shot it in every single spot isn’t relevant, but every scene took place in a new terrain ranging from Dubai, Bolivia, Mexico, Miami and Los Angeles and surely several others I’m not thinking of. I definitely liked the constant switch of scenery, which was constantly under attack by our lovable losers, which brings us to the action. There’s a good deal of it, though you never really feel the main characters are ever in danger it does fit the requisite 5 explosions per 20 minutes of run-time.
Why you won’t like this:
throwaway plot points; not very thrilling or serious
There’s a couple things I can take away from seeing this action movie: 1) I got some good laughs and enjoyed decent action; 2) I will have entirely forgotten this movie by tomorrow. The reality is that this movie will not leave a mark on me, even though I’ll be able to reference another point on how Chris Evans is a fantastic actor, but outside of that I don’t imagine looking forward to another viewing or recommending this to a friend over “Kick-Ass”, that’s where it ultimately loses out.
3 out of 5 stars.
Starring: Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Zoe Saldana, Chris Evans, Idris Elba, Columbus Short, Jason Patric
Director: Sylvain White
Running Time: 1 hr. 38 min.
Release Date: April 23, 2010