Thursday, September 02, 2010

Double Movie Review: A-Team and Sorcerer's Apprentice

The A-Team Reboot Works - 7.5/10

If you're queuing up at the movies and you're not sure what to watch, and you've been smart and watched INCEPTION and Knight and Day then you'll probably be left with these two. A-Team and Apprentice. Both are action fantasy flicks, A-Team may even be the more imaginative of the two. What's good about A-Team is it shows us a little backstory, it's the Origins story of the A-Team. We learn little things like A is for Alpha Team and where BA develops his fear of flying.

It's not a flawless flick, but a lot of moolah and effort went into making it. A favorite scene is 'driving a tank' that's parachuting out of the sky. Sharlto Copley also does South Africa proud with the odd accent ek se. The bad guy/s are the problem. It's okay having one arch enemy but it gets confusing when everyone is morfing into the bad guy. I guess the bottom line in A-Team is betrayal, but the storyline is a little confusing. Gadgets is something writer Stephen J. Cannell made part and parcel of the franchise and this flick uses gadgets and explosions - making Hannibal's plan 'come together' to full effect. Liam Neeson has been ridiculed as Hannibal, but I thought he did a good job.

Nicolas Cage's Sorcerer Sucks 5.5/10

Dave Stutler: [singing] I got a date with a girl cause I'm... awesome!
Did you know that the Sorcerer's Apprentice originally came to us from a 1797 poem.  
WIKI: The poem begins as an old sorcerer departs his workshop, leaving his apprentice with chores to perform. Tired of fetching water by pail, the apprentice enchants a broom to do the work for him — using magic he is not yet fully trained in. The floor is soon awash with water, and the apprentice realizes that he cannot stop the broom because he does not know how to.
Not knowing how to control the enchanted broom, the apprentice splits it in two with an axe, but each of the pieces becomes a new broom and takes up a pail and continues fetching water, now at twice the speed. When all seems lost, the old sorcerer returns, quickly breaks the spell and saves the day. The poem finishes with the old sorcerer's statement that powerful spirits should only be called by the master himself.

It's a compelling idea, but that's all it is.  It's just a single evocative scene with nothing else holding it together.  Frankly, Cage's Apprentice tries to invent a back story.  It's not a very good one.  For starter's if the flick is about an Apprentice, why not cast a big star in the role instead of I-don't-know-who.  Is Cage supposed to steal the show?  If he is, he doesn't do a great job.  It's entertaining but it's not charming.  It lacks...what's the word...magic. 
If Balthazar [Cage] is supposed to be so old and wise why does he seem so modern and clever?  I'm not sure what Merlin has to do with the story, or the balls spewing electricity idea, and the bozo who plays the Apprentice irritates.  A SkyMovies review describes him [whoever he is] as Shia LeBeouf without the preening conceit.  Yes, perhaps he is supposed to be a bumbler, but the result is that when this kid who seems to be majoring in Self-Deprecation finally pulls off magic tricks they're not credible.  There's also something faintly unconvincing about the special, magic. 
Those are the good guys.  What about the baddies, like Alfred Molina and whatsis face?

Molina doesn't do much, but if a villain with a walking stick and bowler hat is your idea of evil, he's your man. - NY Daily News

Monica Belluci adds some sexiness to a cast, and the enchanted broom scene does tickle for half a moment.  Very small children will enjoy this, along with people who almost never go to the movies and don't really care what they watch [or if it makes any sense].  For the rest, stick to Mickey Mouse.

No comments: