Nowadays it seems like Hollywood is running out of ideas for movies that they are either: remaking older films, making films based on television shows or hitting the comic book stores to see what's hot. The Losers falls into the comic book category, but could easily fall into any of the previously mentioned categories.
The Losers is based on a DC/Vertigo comic that is in itself an updated version of a World War II DC comic about a rag-tag group of soldiers. Even though it's roots are based in comics, the movie feels like it could have been filmed in the late 80's, early 90's when action movies were running rampant in theaters. The film also feels like it could have been a television series with new adventures every week, a la The A-team, but that I will get into later.
The basic premise of the movie is that The Losers, Clay (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), Jensen (Chris Evans), Roque (Idris Elba), Pooch (Columbus Short) and Cougar (Oscar Jaenada), are betrayed, left for dead and decide to clear their names and get revenge on the mysterious Max, played with uncanny sarcasm by Jason Patric. This plot sounds similar to The A-team and that is where the similarities end; there is no signature vehicle, no iconic catch phrase and no crazy teammate, although Chris Evans character does seem a little off sometimes.
As soon as the movie begins we see the bond between the team and could tell that they have gone on various missions before, so there really isn't any genesis of the group. This is great because we are not caught up in learning their back stories and why they do what they do, instead the director throws us right into the story. The men are about to bomb a drug lords factory in Bolivia when they see a bus load of kids arrive to be used as mules. The team tries to abort the mission, but the mysterious Max interrupts their communications and tells the pilot to carry out the bombing. With only eight minutes before the bombs are dropped the team race to save the kids and leave before the whole place goes up in smoke. The men succeed, save the kids, but their rendezvous chopper has enough room for only the kids. The men tell the kids to be safe and as the chopper departs it is shot down in front of the them. "That was supposed to be us" says Clay into the camera and the team are now left for dead and stranded in Bolivia.
Flash forward four months and the team is now making due in their new home, working in a doll factory and betting on cock fights, when Clay is approached by Aisha (Zoe Saldana). She makes Clay and the team an offer to get them back into the States and will help them with what they need to bring down Max. Max is played with brilliant sarcasm and over the top evil that I think people will be divided with Jason Patric's performance. Some people will find him as too much, while others will get it and sit back and enjoy the performance. His miss-communication during a meeting with his second-in-command Wade on the rooftop will have you laughing, even though you shouldn't be.
As with all action movies there are a few plot twists, someone goes bad and a hidden agenda is revealed, but that plays well within this movie. The Losers is a fun ride and I think that's what people should expect when sitting down in their seats. The movie has sharp witty dialogue and constantly keeps you invested in what's happening on the screen. The two performances that stood out to me were that of Jason Patric and Chris Evans. Evans is the scene stealer of the movie with his over the top performance and his eye catching t-shirts, (you'll see what I mean.) To me the funniest line he says is "Look at me, I got a crossbow" or something to that effect.
The movie is action packed and a good time to be had. The movie leaves it open for a possible sequel and I would like to see more adventures from The Losers, but it's up to the fans to decide that. Definitely check out this movie this weekend and be prepared to enjoy yourselves and leave the theater wanting more and humming Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'." Trust me, you'll love the way they use the song.
3 four sided dice out of 4.