The A-Team Unrated Extended Cut (2010)
Despite an excess of CGI driven action scenes, Joe Carnahan's reboot of the iconic eighties TV show The A-Team, still manages to capture elements of the original. The plans are complex but come together and there are improvised devices and munitions made from sundry items. Due to the strong cast, there is also a good dynamic between the lead characters. It's all very loud, incredibly stupid, yet surprisingly entertaining. Don't get me wrong, this far from a hidden gem. Merely an enjoyable, bombastic exercise in cinematic self-indulgence,
The A-Team are now Iraq War veterans but the essential traits of the main characters are still there. Bradley Cooper takes to the roll Templeton Peck like a duck to water. Liam Neeson is suitably gruff as Hannibal Smith. But I actually found Sharlto Copley and Quinton Jackson as Mad Murdock and Bosco B.A. Baracus, to be the most absorbing protagonists. Although the script is hardly a masterpiece its greatest strength is the interplay among the team itself. Copley performance is strong and more than just arbitrarily quirky. Jackson also had more to do than just be a bad ass and I warmed to his storyline and personal conflict.
Another aspect of The A-Team that I enjoyed was at how at times, it felt like a throwback to sixties caper movies and a variation on the heist sub-genre. The humourous undertone also did a lot to make the over the top nature of some of the set pieces a little more palatable. The plot regarding stolen plates for printing bank notes, inter-governmental department duplicity and international globetrotting is self-indulgent and at times clumsily telegraphed for those who may have been napping. But when one considers the original TV show, that to was hardly an exercise in subtlety and restraint. Overall The A-Team is sufficiently different enough not to be just straight forward PG-13 action fodder.
The Unrated Extended cut of the movie runs eighteen minutes longer than the theatrical version and mainly contains longer scenes of plot exposition and dialogue, rather than violence. One action sequence does feature some additional footage of contract soldiers being shot whilst in their car, but it happens at night and is light on detail. There are some a few more instance of stronger language, as well. Full details of the differences can be found over at Movie-Censorship.com along with screen captures. The longer running time does make The A-Team a more rounded picture and therefore this is the cut I would recommend.