The A-Team

 

20th Century Fox

 

Rating: PG-13

 

Reason for the Rating: Intense sequences of action and violence throughout, language and smoking.

 

Plot Summary: A team of soldiers tries to clear their names for a crime they did not commit.

 

PopFam Recommends: This is a movie a parent can take the kids to and not be afraid of language, flying body parts, or anything related to sex. It's a movie made for the kid in everyone, so dig down deep, find that kid and go ahead and enjoy the fun.

 

If you grew up in the '80's, you no doubt remember Mr. T, Face, Hannibal, and Murdock with fondness. Who could forget Mr. T growling, "I pity the fool..." or girls swooning over Templeton "Faceman" Peck?

 

Like any other remake, the movie form of a t.v. series means it will either be awful (The Dukes of Hazzard) or receive rave reviews (Sex and the City). The A-Team was one movie that I wasn't sure about. I mean, how do you play with a cultural phenomenon and not ruin it? 20th Century Fox took a try, and actually came up with a really fun movie.

 

The A-Team is made up of four Army Rangers in various stages of service. Hannibal (Liam Neeson) is the man in charge, with Templeton "Faceman" Peck (Bradley Cooper), B.A. Baracus (Quinton "Rampage" Jackson), and Murdock (Sharlto Copley) as his team members. B.A. was previously dishonorably discharged from the Rangers, but was reinstated due to participation in an undercover mission, and Murdock has been declared insane and lives in a mental hospital. Until Hannibal needs a good pilot, and then he's part of the team.

 

At the end of the Iraq War, Hannibal and his friends discover a plot by the Iraqi's to steal counterfeiting plates of American money. Using a lot of outlandish maneuvers (which is what the A-Team is known for, isn't it?), the team steals back the plates and returns them to the army base. Only to have the truck blown up and the plates stolen again. Unfortunately, since the mission was undercover, and no one else knew about it, the team is accused of stealing the plates for their own gain, and sentenced to prison.

 

When the CIA approaches Hannibal and offers the opportunity to clear their names, he's ready and willing. After breaking himself and the others out of jail, he begins the task of recovering the plates. But can the team trust the CIA, or should they turn to Charisa Sosa, an army Lieutenant and ex-flame of Face?

 

To be honest, for a serious movie buff, The A-Team isn't going to rock your world. The characters are shallow and the story far-fetched. But that's what makes it so like the t.v. series and simply fun to watch. The characters may be shallow, but they are colorful and full of spirit. The story is certainly far-fetched, but it doesn't lack in creativity and special effects. With themes of honesty, injustice, and friendship, it's a movie that is full of character.

 

As a parent, I have to say it's about time a movie like this was made. How many parents take their kids, especially boys, to movies full of killing, language, and sex simply because it's an action movie? While there is violence, and a few instances of language, you won't see anyone being stabbed, shot at close range, or blood running in the streets. Kudo's to 20th Century Fox for making an exciting, fast-paced movie we all can enjoy.

 

The "unrated" Blu-ray Disc version of this film includes both the theatrical version and "extended" version of the movie, as well as special features like gag reel, deleted scenes, A-Team mash-up montage, and more.

 

Let’s Talk About It

Use these questions to spark discussion among family members who are interested in this movie:

 

• Tell about a time you told the truth and still got in trouble. Explain what happened.

 

• You've been assigned a secret mission for the government. Who will you take with you, and what role will they play?

 

• Most of us believe in Christ's teaching of peace and "turning the other cheek." B.A. struggled with the idea of violence and killing, but eventually decided there was a time and place for force in justice. What do you think? How can these two principles come together?

 

--JW

 

Note: All product-related graphics in this article are standard publicity/promotional shots and are owned by their respective publisher.

 

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