Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Losers

The Losers
Grade: C
Cast: Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Zoe Saldana, Idris Elba, Chris Evans, Columbus Short, Jason Patric
Director: Sylvain White

In the future, will every comic book have its 15 minutes of fame?

As we hurtle toward some grand geek culture apocalypse, The Losers might be evidence of this theory. Have you ever heard of DC Comics' The Losers? There’s not a lot you are likely to expect from the film, and it’s likely to live up to your expectations.

There are two approaches to comic book filmmaking. Some films notably stylize their efforts by using digital technology to create over-the-top fictional worlds (Sin City or The Watchmen). Then there’s the older style, such as the original Superman films. The Losers never chooses between the two. Sometimes it’s straight-up realistic action. Other times, it opts for ridiculous stylized violence within a realistic setting. As a result, it’s often difficult to suspend disbelief. It’s a nagging problem that never gets solved.

An Army recon team raids a drug processing compound. A camp CIA maniac orders their death but misses, leading to a tragedy. Believed dead, they want revenge. A mysterious woman shows up to help them. The villains include previously noted CIA guy, his not-too-bright henchman, and a team of the flabbiest former special forces soldiers that you’ll ever see. The material is so inspired by The A-Team that the group sometimes travels by ugly van.

Chris Evans, as the group wiseass Jensen, has moments, but not as many or as clever as he should. Jeffrey Dean Morgan as the leader Clay, brings some haggard charm. Zoe Saldana seems to be at her weakest, maybe a little bored.

There certainly nothing all that wrong with The Losers. It has some decent action moments, some effective comedy, and it never lost my interest. But as it leaves itself open for a sequel at the end, it really just makes you sigh.

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