Saturday, 27 February 2010

Further thoughts on The A-Team movie (2010)

Haven't made a blog entry for a while, so here goes with a huge chunk of further thoughts on the upcoming movie adaptation.

Well, it's creeping ever closer... even if us U.K. fans DO have to wait over a month longer to see it than the U.S. As I plan to go and see it twice, and buy the DVD as soon as it's released, I'm almost tempted to see it pre-U.K. release on the various streaming sites hidden away on the 'Net. No, that would be wrong... and a debate for a whole other website! (Plus, face it folks, you might be "watching the movie for free" on those sites, but the quality is RUBBISH, to the extent that much of the time it's not worth attempting to watch anyway).

Anyway, the trailer looked promising, though I do agree with some fans who have said that they weren't too keen on the CGI work (mostly on the air sequence). Hopefully this won't be over done and spoil the film as a whole. I'm just interested how the whole thing turns out in the end - if anything, it already looks more promising that 2005's so-abysmal-it-was-embarrassing 'Dukes of Hazzard' movie (I'm a huge 'Dukes' fan, but after initially viewing it at the cinema, have never stomached a full repeat viewing).

As I'd never seen Bradley Cooper on-screen before (and also because I'd heard it was a good movie), I bought the DVD of 'The Hangover', and watched it a few weeks ago. Although I'm not always a fan of crude "say the F words as many times as you can" comedies, I actually found it well put together (I really like the character of Alan), and thought that Cooper came across well. (As a side note, they're already in early stages of doing 'Hangover 2', which I hope isn't just a quick cash-in sequel).

I also got 'District 9' (which has also got great reviews), to see Sharlto Copley, but haven't got around to watching it yet. I may finally try to see it tomorrow evening.

I've mentioned this before, but just to cover it again, Jessica Biel does not play Amy in the movie. Early reports suggested that she did indeed play Amy, who had been adapted from the journalist of the original series, to an Army Lieutenant. This seems to have simply stemmed from various sources seeing her cast and automatically assuming "hey, she must be the female A-Team member". In fact, she plays a new character, Lt. Sosa (who, some reports indicate, after being in pursuit of the team early on in the movie, later joins forces with them).

Annnyyywaayy... I've been mostly enthusiastic about what I've seen / read about TAT 2010, and they seem to know what they're aiming for. However, I did read an interview (here) where director Joe Carnahan says, quote, "I thought they were too slavishly devoted to the TV show... While I like the TV show, I didn't think it was any great shakes in terms of heavy drama. You could take that story and have it translate into the present day with more success."
I see both good and bad in that. As hard core an original series fan as I am, I fully understand that a new movie would need to be updated to modern times; and hope that it will have a more serious streak than some of the silly, rather childish episodes that we saw from late third season onwards. However, at the same time, on his "While I like the TV show, I didn't think it was any great shakes in terms of heavy drama" ... well, that was kind of the point. It had a serious streak, but for the most part was supposed to be tongue-in-cheek and almost a spoof, not really "heavy drama" as Carnahan puts it. While I can relate to updating it for modern times, I hope they don't lose too much of the original feel of what 'The A-Team' is all about.

Carnahan goes on to say, quote, "We're not making homage to 'The A-Team'... We're taking the base story of four guys wrongfully convicted of a crime, they're an Alpha Unit, that's it. THAT'S the point of departure." Again, I hope they bear in mind what the series was all about, but I'm more flexible of what I think about this, I think it's all in keeping with gently updating the concept.

The thing I really did pick up on, though, was what he had to say about the character of Murdock - "People are a lot more keen and savvy. If you tried to put that show out today, you wouldn't get away with what they got away with… I mean, Murdoch for what passed as crazy 25 years ago? It doesn’t hold up. Nowadays, you have Steve-O on 'Jackass' strapping on a g-string made out of chicken parts and rappelling over an alligator pit. So you have to reevaluate things like 'crazy.'" - Well, overlooking Murdock being misspelled Murdoch (one of my pet peeves), this is the only thing that has vaguely rings alarm bells for me. If you want crazy, check out some of the real life tales of veterans from Vietnam and many other wars; pulling outlandish pranks is nothing new. But the reason it concerns me, is that - for all of his costumes and various personas - the original TV Murdock was all about character crazy. I'm worried that the movie is going down the "hey, this is the 21st century, we need to make things more extreme!" line of thinking. It worries me because this is exactly the route that 2005's 'Dukes of Hazzard' movie took - and we all know what a total disaster that turned out to be!
However, I've read in some other interviews about some of this new incarnation of Murdock's crazy exploits (barbecuing with explosive power, for example), so we can cross our fingers that there will be some humorous moments not too distant from the original character.

Anyway, enough of over-analyzing various interview snippets... for all that might be changed from the original series, as you probably know by now, both Dirk Benedict and Dwight Schultz are making cameos in the new movie. I am very pleased about this - it is at least some nod to the original classic show at least. Quite how they will be worked in remains to be seen, but for me - and, I expect, many other long-time fans - this is one of the bits of the new movie that I am most looking forward to.

Of course, George Peppard can't be in it for obvious reasons (sob), but Mr. T is famously resisting making an appearance of any sort. Of late that, despite principal shooting having wrapped, that Carnahan is hoping to finally twist T's arm to film a cameo that can be slotted in. But sadly I don't think it's going to happen. Mr. T has given various reasons, often including that he doesn't want to be part of a "violent" movie with "cursing" and etc. in, as well as him thinking that (paraphrasing) "people would expect him to have a big part in the movie, and that wouldn't be the case". Whatever the reason, unless there is some surprise 11-th hour change of mind from Big T, sadly it seems as if we won't be seeing him on the big screen.

Well, that's all for now. The site ( has seen a lot of updates of late, and there are many more to come over the next couple of weeks. And don't forget to visit the dedicated forum, for all things A-Team related. Until next time... :)

Saturday, 24 October 2009

The A-Team (2010) - first "offical" photo and updates

Yesterday, the first "official" photo of the new A-Team began surfacing on various sites. Just how "official" it is, is debatable - it's certainly seen some Photoshop work, but then again, so have most official promo shots for movies nowadays.

Although I haven't been directly copy and pasting each new shot connected to the movie, instead linking to them, enough sites have posted this picture that I think I can get away with it here.

From left to right: Bradley Cooper as Face, Quinton "Rampage" Jackson as B.A., Sharlto Copley as Murdock, and Liam Neeson (looking very 'The Bend In The River' IMO) as Hannibal.

For a much larger version of the image, visit here.

This site also has a number of other shots from shooting of the film - some of which we've seen previously, and some of which are new.

And this site has a shot of "Rampage" as B.A. It seems that they have gone for Mr. T's famous Mohawk after all, though in my opinion, it should be cut away from his forehead, and a little more 'tufty' (what am I, a hairdresser?!).

...Which leads us on to this video from E.T.. It gives very little away, but "Rampage" does comment "Less gold, more muscle", suggesting that the new version of B.A. will not have Mr. T's famous jewellery. There is also a brief clip of him "acting" with Murdock, although - as others have said - I think this is an outtake of them fooling around; I hope we see better than this in the actual movie!
A different edit of the same report can be viewed here

So... a lot to take in. From what I've seen so far, I'm reasonably optimistic. I hope Face isn't suited for the entire movie, and that we see him in his leather jacket and jeans (the original Face didn't start wearing suits until the second season), and I'd like to see Murdock with his different humorous t-shirts (so far, the movie Murdock has only been seen wearing a plain black t-shirt). Time will tell...

Monday, 12 October 2009

New A-Team movie - first photos, and thoughts (warning - LONG)

Well, it's been on ... and off ... and on ... and off again for many years now. But finally the big-screen version of 'The A-Team' is in production! (a site which I don't always like, as they have many mistakes, particularly on TV shows, and trying to correct it is harder than trying to get B.A. to fly!), gives the rundown of the new movie, being filmed in Vancouver.

The main cast is confirmed as: Liam Neeson as Hannibal, Bradley Cooper as Face, Sharlto Copley as Murdock, and Quinton "Rampage" Jackson as B.A.

A few weeks ago, The Sun newspaper here in the U.K. announced Rampage as the new B.A., only for it to be reported that this was incorrect. The Sun has a history of jumping the gun and mis-reporting things, but it appears that this time, they were right!

I confess that I'm not that familiar with the cast - other than Neeson from the original 'Darkman' movie. Sharlto Copley is South African, but reportedly will be using an American accent. I wonder if this means Irish Neeson will be performing Hannibal with American drawl too?

Anyway... the first photos are up. I won't directly post them here, as I don't know what kind of copyright they have over them, but I will link to them!

The first shot to emerge was of The A-Team van... see it here. Instantly I noticed that the red stripe on the side is incorrect, it should start going up as soon as it is past the driver's / passenger's door. The back window has some kind of gill which is also incorrect. Other more car (or truck)-avid fans have spotted other inaccuracies with it, and just to look at it, it looks like a cheap knock off. I can't tell if above the paint above the red stripe the paint is metallic grey (the van is often mistaken for being all black!) or if it is just lighting, but either way, I am disappointed that the van doesn't look right. But I'm prepared to forgive them that if they make a decent film. (Also, I wonder if Face will have his Corvette at all?)

The first shot of the main four can be seen here. In fairness, they don't look too bad - Neeson has George Peppard's silver (well, grey at least) hair, and if you look at Murdock, he appears to be clutching a cap (he doesn't seem to be wearing a trademark Murdock t-shirt though). Rampage as B.A. is sitting down with a hat on, so we can't see yet if he has Mr. T's iconic mohawk and jewelry. Is that thing in the background a boat? Maybe something to do with B.A. refusing to fly? Only time will tell!

Also to report is that Jessica Biel is rumored (seemingly confirmed) as ... Amy Allen. Photo seen on previous link, and see more here. I suppose she doesn't look too bad, at least they didn't do a "Jessica Simpson as Daisy Duke" and give her blonde hair!! But the twist is - according to reports - that this version of Amy is an old girlfriend of Face, and is in pursuit of the team. Now, this could possibly mean that, like the original Amy in the Pilot, she is trying to track down the team to hire them, but reports generally seem to indicate that she is somehow trying to capture the team. Does this mean she will replace Lynch / Decker / whoever? Again, we'll have to wait and see!

On the whole, I'm quite excited by what I've seen so far. I just hope it turns out better than 2005's 'The Dukes of Hazzard' - 'Hazzard is one of my favourite ever shows after TAT, but 2005's effort was abysmal. I could write a whole essay on it, but just to say... crude, miscast, and beyond all, a missed opportunity. Hopefully 'The A-Team' will fare better, and instead of being a crude teen movie, will evolve into something exciting, with a cool vibe.

I'm wondering what kind of plot they will go for - although the Military were often shown to be in pursuit of the original Team, few stories revolved merely around the Military. So I'm wondering / hoping that the movie has some 'people in need' for the new Team to help. Also, I'm wondering on the level of the comedy - I hope we get some of that old A-Team humour, especially some B.A. / Murdock moments, but don't want it to be too over-the-top in the comedy stakes (which is why I always felt that Jim Carrey would have been very wrong for the role of Murdock - see previous post).

The movie is scheduled for a July 11th 2010 release, but here in the U.K. seems set to be released on July 30th. Argh - how will I wait those extra days (and avoid spoilers)?!

More updates as information appears. If you know of anything I've missed, please add a comment. But hey folks... after over 20 years away... The A-Team are back!!

UPDATE / EDIT: More photos Here, a really good article - with nice comparisons to the original cast (even if the photo they used is back-to-front!). And it looks like Rampage may have a shaven head, minus the mohwak! It also seems to confirm that in this version, Amy is a General in pursuit of the team. One worrying point is a report that Rampage, as B.A., is seen inside a helicopter - seemingly going against B.A.'s famous refusal to fly. However, I wouldn't read too much into this until more details about the film are known.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

The A-Team Captured! aims to be the most detailed TAT fansite on the 'net. Anyway, he's more about my tortoise(!)

I went away with my folks last week (yeah, I know! anyway...) to the coast. We have family down there, and we gave Tim the Troublesome Tortoise to my cousin Gary as a trial.
Gary has quite a few tortoises, and took Tim to see how he got on.

Last report was that Tim was headbutting the other tortoises, so he's settled in just fine. All of the other tortoi (is that plural? Who knows?! Who cares!!) are women, so Tim (now renamed "Charlie Brown") must think he's in heaven!
I did take a picture of his new home, but my stupid SD card corrupted the picture.
Oh well, he's a shot of my dogs instead, waiting to go on their latest seaside outing!

Hettie and Minnie

My folks are thinking of moving down there, and I think I might move into the area too - so many places to walk and explore; not like where I live now. My current area is so rough, people steal the bricks from under people's cars!

Anyway, more posts ABOUT THE A-TEAM coming soon! Stay tuned!!

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Tortoise troubles

As well as musing on TAT and all things 1980s, I thought I'd bore you all with some of the things in my daily life!


You might have heard of Marley, the naughtiest dog in the world; well, presenting... Tim, the naughtiest tortoise in the world.

We've had Tim about 22 years. We got him from a neighbour whose mother owned him. When we got him, he had a hole drilled in the lip of his shell, so he could be tied to a pole and not get into any mischief. At first, we thought this was a bit cruel... maybe it should have been a warning sign for how bad he can be.

Tim likes to chase animals. Yes, my tortoise can RUN! When my dogs, Minnie and Hettie, are out in the garden when it's sunny (sun - what's that?), they'll be laying down minding their own business, and he'll race up to them and take a nip at them. No I am not making this up!

The cats are okay, because they can lay up out of the way, but the dogs have no escape - he'll nip them, they'll move, and he'll chase after them again... on it goes. I used to have some shoes with an orange stripe around them, and he even used to chase those!

So on this went until a couple of weeks ago, when Hettie, my youngest dog, finally had enough, and turned around, and nearly bit his head off! Blood everywhere... we though he was dead.

Did he learn his lesson? Nooo. He was soon back to his naughty old self. His run is done up like Fort Knox, to try and stop him even sticking his head through the wire and tempt fate.

So anyway... he has to go, before he meets his maker. My cousin has tortoises and is going to look after him for a trial period. I hope he behaves himself!
Updates on his new home soon...

Monday, 31 August 2009

The A-Team movie - rumours and thoughts

Well, a big screen version of 'The A-Team' has been on and off for many years now, but lately, it seems to have the emphasis of being ON again, with a 2010 release date rumoured.

There have been many reports of casting bouncing around, but Liam Neeson (currently) seems to be cast as Hannibal, with Bradley Cooper as Face. I'm not really familiar with Cooper, but I'm not sure how well an Irish-toned Hannibal will go down.

There have many reports on the casting of B.A. Last week, it was "confirmed" that Quinton "Rampage" Jackson had been signed up, but this later turned out to not be true.
There is a suggestion on one of the IMDB threads that Terry Crews could play him - actually, I wouldn't mind this so much!!

The big question is Murdock. Of late, Woody Harrelson has been mentioned a lot, although not offically.
On all of the (many) casting discussion threads, one name that people always suggest is Jim Carrey. Well, I have to say, personally, I think this would be terrible casting. I'm not saying Carrey isn't funny - I couldn't used to stand Carrey, though I have warmed to him recent years ('The Truman Show' is one of my favourite movies). But beyond that, I think it would be just wrong - Carrey would be far too over-the-top for the role; bearing in mind 'The A-Team' is an ensemble piece, I think Carrey would be too overpowering and would be the wrong kind of comedy for what the film requires.
Personally, I'd like to see a more subdued-mooded Robin Williams take the role, but I think he is too old for what they are going for.
But please, not Carrey - it just would't fit with the film!


Greetings one and all.

Well, it seems I only get to update The A-Team Captured! ( once in a blue moon at the moment; I have lots I want to do with it, but currently just don't have the time.
I'm hoping to put some serious hours in on those long dark Autumn and Winter nights.

But in the meantime, I thought I'd start a blog, just to jot down my various musings on all things A-Team, as well as other classic 1980s shows, things I collect, and life in general.

So watch this space. Or don't - see if I care! =)