what happens when a frat guy gets to write his deepest fantasies,
minus the date rapes. It's a smug asshole's wet dream: shooting
guns, strutting like a peacock with his dick dragging in the mud,
and having only the most superficial understanding of morality.
In The Losers, it's okay for good guys to kill innocents,
but not okay for the bad guys. Actually, if the bad guys kill
an innocent, the good guys get to kill them too. This movie is
as dumb as a shoot-em-up gets, and not nearly enough fun to justify
Another thing about The Losers that makes me think of
frat guys is this: the heroes are fucking morons who think they're
really clever. I'm sure they're as clever as screenwriters Peter
Berg and James Vanderbilt, meaning they aren't nearly as smart
as they think they are. In order for the heroes to be brighter
than the villains, the villains are written to be dumber than
eating frozen fish sticks with hot fudge after getting drunk
on your own fermented urine. Take my word for it, that feels
really dumb. Especially the third time you do it.
This is a low-rent ripoff of the A-Team. Ripping off
The A-Team makes as much sense counterfeiting Zimbabwean
dollars. Despite what nostalgia and faded memories tell you:
the A-Team was shitty. It's not like it's some classic
story that requires retelling and reinvention to discover all
of its nuances. But Hollywood ain't interested in nuance of
reinvention. They like easy. In fact, if anything The Losers
dumbs down an already lame idea. In the old TV show, the ragtag
band of loveable losers fought to help other people. In this
one, the unlikeable, bland assholes are only act on their desire
to kill someone out of revenge.
Some no-name actors, one of whom looks sort of like the tall
guy on Everybody Loves Raymond but mumblier (I guess
that gives him the most starpower), are a top secret team of
soldiers. One guy is the computer whiz, one is the crackshot,
one is the charmer and two guys play BA Baracus, able to drive
or fly anything. These guys don't have the charm or wit of the
A-Team, who didn't have the charm or wit of Ethel Merman
after eight carafes of burgundy, a bottle of Quaaludes and with
her mouth stuffed full of dicks, singing "Mame".
The Losers were betrayed by their superior and left
for dead in South America. Not being dead, they seek revenge
on their superior, a shadowy bad guy named Max. He is played
by the long-lost and easily-forgotten Jason Patric, a man as
famous for his comedic chops as I am for dental hygiene. Yet,
here he is failing as miserably at being funny as I do at having
Patric is a meant to be an over-the-top hyper-evil Bond villain.
A retarded one. He assumes the titular Losers are dead because
they threw their tangled dog tags into a pile of burnt helicopter
ashes. I guess he just figured they died while entangled like
snakes in an erotic orgy. Not being dead, the Z-Team wishes
they could kill him, but have no idea how. That's because they
are neither smart nor resourceful.
Enter Zoe Saldana, a shadowy stranger who can be quickly bed.
She effortlessly tracks the Z-Team down in Bolivia. One of the
first things she tells them is that it was easy to find them.
I guess that's because she's not a supervillain and mastermind
with unlimited resources. For those guys, it's fucking impossible.
Saldana talks the Z-Team into helping her kill Patric. They
are slightly skeptical of a stranger. Who wouldn't be? The problem
with this turd is that they truly are only barely doubtful.
They quickly agree to whatever she says when her argument is
"I wouldn't say this if I were a liar," This is what's called
in screenwriting a "complete and total load of horseshit."
What follows is a fake globetrotting adventure for the heroes
and villains. Fake because The Losers' idea of traveling
the world is showing b-roll establishing shots of Dubai, Mumbai,
Nogales, Miama and Bolivia followed by scenes happening in a
generic room, warehouse or office. Someone with a camera traveled
the world, but it wasn't these actors or this story.
I have virtually no recollection of the main characters. They
all have tough guy names that represent a serious lack of imagination.
I think there's a Rock Hardcock and a Roy Manbooby. It doesn't
matter, though. These characters aren't worthy of original names.
The Losers makes the most transparent of attempts to
trick us into giving a shit. That is, each character is allowed
one distinguishing trait: one has a baby due to a wife who thinks
he's dead. One wears goofy T-shirts. One is a hard-ass and another
rarely speaks. All are superheroes in the fighting department,
and all will happily shoot innocent police, security guards
and blow up shit around the helpless, unsuspecting people on
the streets of major cities. They are, like I said, a frat guy's
nonsexual wet dream. Wait, make that a frat guy overloading
The Z-Team is very slow to figure out the obvious and very
quick to resolve huge plot holes. In fact, they resolve every
single one of them by ignoring it. The movie's leaps from scene
to scene left me thinking "What happened to...", "How'd they
manage to..." "But what about..." For the first half, anyway.
By the last 45 minutes I was bored out of my fucking skull.
The climax takes place on the docks and is loaded with shootouts,
explosions and double-crosses. The heroes have perfect aim when
necessary, and lousy aim when it's convenient. The bad guys
always have shitty aim. Because the characters are so fucking
trite and interchangeable, I had a hard time keeping track of
the action and why I was supposed to give a fuck.
Once this turd winds its way out of the lower intestine of
the film projector, there are two unpleasant surprises waiting
for audiences. First is, Jason Patric gets away in what signals
a sequel. For fuck's sake! Don't make a shitty movie and then
be so damn smug about it that you already plan a sequel. Who
in their right fucking mind thought something this disposable
was franchise material? The Losers' coda is a sappy reminder
that, hey, even though these guys have killed and endangered
hundreds, they're human beings and we ought to love them. Fuck
it, a movie has to earn a coda as sticky as the one that closes
out this crapper.