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The Losers (2010) - Plot Summary Poster

(I) (2010)

Plot

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Summaries

  • A CIA special forces team are betrayed and left for dead by their superiors, galvanizing them to mount an offensive on the CIA.

  • A tale of double cross and revenge, centered upon the members of an elite U.S. Special Forces unit sent into the Bolivian jungle on a search and destroy mission. The team-Clay, Jensen, Roque, Pooch and Cougar -find themselves the target of a lethal betrayal instigated from inside by a powerful enemy known only as Max. Presumed dead, the group makes plans to even the score when they're joined by the mysterious Aisha, a beautiful operative with her own agenda. Working together, they must remain deep undercover while tracking the heavily-guarded Max, a ruthless man bent on embroiling the world in a new high-tech global war.

  • Clay, Jensen, Pooch, and Roque are part of United States Special Forces Unit. They are deployed to a mission in Bolivia involving a drug lord, they end up disobeying orders and rescuing children. Their enraged boss, codenamed Max, orders them dead, but they survive, and end up doing small-time jobs. Then Aisha enters their lives, smuggles them back to the States on the condition that they kill Max. The group will soon realize that she has inducted them on a suicide mission - a mission which will take them to Dubai, United Arab Emirates; and to Mumbai, India; and come in possession of a mysterious encrypted hard-drive while not only facing betrayal from one of their own but also certain and violent death at the hands of Max.


Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • The Losers are an elite black-ops team of United States Special Forces operatives, led by Lt. Col. Franklin Clay (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) - Operational Control. The rest of the team consists of Capt. William Roque (Idris Elba) - Demo And Tactical; Sgt. Linwood "Pooch" Porteous (Columbus Short), - Transport And Heavy Weapons; Capt. Jake Jensen (Chris Evans) - Comms And Tech; and Sgt. Carlos "Cougar" Alvarez (Óscar Jaenada) - Long-Range Eliminations, who are sent to Bolivia in a search-and-destroy mission against a compound run by a drug lord named Fadhil (Peter Francis James).

    While laser "painting" the target for an air strike, the Losers spot a busload of school children arriving at the compound. The children are being used as drug mules. Clay tries to get their mission coordinator back in Washington, D.C., a man they know only by voice and code name, "Max" (Jason Patric), to call off the attack, but Max ignores Clay's pleas and orders them to proceed. Clay then orders the laser guidance system destroyed and informs Max that they've experienced irreparable damage to their guidance equipment and the attack will have to be canceled. Max informs them that the coordinates had already been locked in, so the jet pilot still knew where to go, and he was not going to withdraw his order to attack under any circumstances. Finally, the Losers attempt to contact the jet pilot directly, but the communications system on the aircraft had been locked out.

    Having no other option, and with only 8 minutes until the jet was due to arrive, the Losers decide to enter the compound and attempt to rescue the children. They come racing into the compound in their Hummer, guns blazing, shooting guards left and right, high and low. Their vehicle is destroyed but they manage to get 24 of the 25 children and hustle them back into the school bus. The final child, a young boy, was being held hostage by the drug lord and owner of the compound, Fadhil (Peter Francis James). After convincing Fadhil to release the boy, Clay is forced to shoot Fadhil when he makes a threatening move. He and the boy then join the others on the bus.

    The Losers and the children speed as fast as that bus will carry them, hurrying to get out of the kill zone of the aerial ordnance about to be released from the jet. The shock wave of the explosions drive them off the road and down a slope where they come to an abrupt stop. Everyone is okay. They call for a helicopter to come execute their pre-planned extraction. The load-master of the helicopter informs the colonel that they can't take both the team and the children, so the colonel tells him to take the children. Once the children are aboard and the helicopter takes off, the team hears the sound of an approaching jet. They watch in horror as the jet releases an air-to-air missile which destroys the helicopter and instantly kills all aboard.

    Knowing that the attack was meant to kill them, the Losers fake their deaths by tossing their dog tags into the fire of the crashed helicopter. They attempt to find their way out of Bolivia and back to the United States where the death of the 25 Bolivian children is a scandal. The government blames the children's deaths on The Losers by saying they were acting without sanction as rogue agents. The government claims The Losers are dead but refuse their families a military ceremony or funeral service.

    Roque is frustrated in his attempts to convince Clay to accept the fact that his life as a soldier is forever over, and that he has no hope of ever finding out who Max is, much less killing him, which Clay very much wants to do.

    Four months later, Clay finds himself being observed and followed by Aisha al-Fadhil (Zoe Saldana), a mysterious woman who proves to possess many unique capabilities. She at first seduces Clay, then tries to kill him in hand-to-hand combat. As they achieve a stand-off in their fight, Aisha offers Clay the chance to find and kill Max, against whom she also wants revenge, but she doesn't say why. She tells him she can provide all of the information, weapons and other items the team will need, including a way to get back into the U.S., undetected. Clay really doesn't have any other options, so he accepts the offer.

    Aisha then arranges for the Losers to return to the United States (New Mexico), smuggling them inside coffins. The team is completely outfitted with weapons, gear, and some information about Max and how he moves around. They hijack a military helicopter after using a military radio to call in a fake accident between a military vehicle (theirs) and a semi-truck on a remote road. They use a shoulder-fired missile to send the helicopter's GPS transponder way off into another area code, then fly the helicopter to a warehouse and give it a new coat of paint.

    We first meet Max when he is in Dubai attempting to force a deal with some Indian engineers or government officials for seismic nukes ("Snukes"), weapons that can cause an entire area to implode on itself, but without any radioactive fall-out. A Snuke was successfully tested when it was detonated on a small island and the island imploded and disappeared. The main official Max had been dealing with was having second thoughts and now just wanted Max to go away and keep his money. Max responds by having his henchman Wade Travis (Holt McCallany) throw the man off a roof. Max pretends that he hadn't meant for Wade to do more than punch the man around a bit, but that was just to show the others there that Wade was unpredictable and someone not to trifle with. One of the other men present promptly decided that they would be more than willing and able to work with Max in acquiring some Snukes.

    The team learns that Max often travels in a heavily guarded, multi-vehicle convoy, with himself situated inside an armored truck. They develop plans to intercept the convoy and kidnap Max. Clay and Roque direct the attack from their command vehicle, a beat up yellow Pinto. As the convoy moves quickly down a busy city street, Cougar shoots the wheels of the lead vehicle, causing it to crash and block further movement. The convoy stops and the guards exit the vehicles and form a perimeter. Clay steps from behind the wheel of the Pinto and fires a gas grenade into their midst, then Roque detonates an explosive device he had earlier attached to the fender of one of the convoy vehicles, blowing it high into the air.

    Pooch and Aisha then swoop in with the newly painted and outfitted military chopper, carrying a huge magnet that they attach to the top of Max's armored truck. Jensen, working from the sidewalk, and disguised as a hot dog vendor, fires a metal device that secures the back doors of the armored truck, preventing the occupants from getting out. As the helicopter lifts and carries away the armored truck, Wade grabs the controls of a .50 caliber machine gun and tries to bring down the chopper. He hits it, but Pooch is able to maintain control and fly out of range.

    When The Losers later open the armored vehicle at their remote warehouse, there are three security guards who come out, pointing their weapons. The guards know nothing about anyone named Max, and an inspection of the truck proves Max is not there. The guards prove to have been escorting only a small box containing an external computer hard drive, made by the "Goliath" mega firm. After the security guards are disabled with sleeper darts, the team becomes furious with Aisha for double-crossing them. Tempers flare and Aisha is nearly killed on the spot by Roque. Even after she tells them she could explain, and that they could still eventually find Max, Clay orders Roque to kill her, burn everything, and get away. Aisha hurriedly explains that the hard drive contains information that is critical to whatever it is Max is doing at the time, and if they can determine what that information is, they will likely be able to find Max and clear their names. Clay decides to postpone her execution.

    Capt. Jensen attempts to read the hard drive, but it's encrypted. He says it would require access to a Goliath system computer to be able to read what's on the drive. So, the team works up a plan to infiltrate the company that made the drive. Jensen poses as an in-house computer tech and manages to gain temporary access to one of the human resource manager's computers at Goliath. He does that by pretending to be a pizza delivery boy, quickly changing his clothes in the elevator (impressing some women who see him when the doors open once before arriving at his floor), then enters the office of the human resources representative whom he'd called to report someone exposing themselves on the main floor. He tells the human resources secretary that he was just going to quickly 'upgrade the firewall'.

    Jensen downloads the encryption key Goliath uses, but is soon confronted by an armed security guard, who was called by the secretary. Jensen knocks that guard down and runs, calling on his radio for advice on how best to escape the building. He's told to head to the north side exterior elevator lobby. He's trapped there by three more security guards, but after a stand off, where Jensen pretends to have invisible handguns he's pointing at the guards, two of the guards go down, shot by Cougar, who fired from a skyscraper a long distance away. The third guard voluntarily lays down on his stomach, as Jensen ordered him to do, and Jensen gets away.

    Back at the base, they find out that the hard drive is a kind of electronic credit card that holds all of Max's illicit funds, $400 million at the time, which he received for selling the Snukes to international terrorists. A list of frequent IP addresses are listed, including one that had been used frequently and which was traced to the Los Angeles International Port Of Entry. Jensen determines that all but $4 million of the $400 million could be directly traced. He was trying to sort out that last amount.

    Clay and Aisha leave the boys to it and hop back into bed together. Aisha keeps up with questions she had been asking about Fadhil, back in Bolivia.

    Jensen later reads more of what he finds on the hard drive. It notes that the Losers mission in Bolivia was a cover, so Max could steal Fadhil's drug money. Furthermore, he was able to locate the destination of that missing $4 million. It was paid to the daughter of the drug lord, Fadhil, a woman named Aisha. As he was reading that last tidbit, everyone on the team drew their weapons and pointed them at Aisha, while at the same time she drew two handguns and pointed the guns at two of them. Jensen didn't have his gun, but he was mostly concerned that Aisha was pointing her gun at his "junk." He said it didn't help when she repositioned the gun and pointed it at his head instead.

    It turns out that Aisha had needed the Losers to help her take revenge for her father and reclaim the money Max stole from him (she apparently didn't know her father was a drug lord). When she learned from Clay, during their pillow talk, that he and his team had targeted the compound for a hit, then called off the hit to rescue some children, and that Fadhil had been killed during their attack, she began to wonder if it was Clay that had killed her father.

    To end the stand-off, Aisha decides to shoot Jensen in his left shoulder and then runs into the bathroom of the hotel suite they were in, taking refuge in the bathtub as the team shredded the bathroom with gunfire. She is nevertheless able to make her escape out a window. Believing that she might betray them, the colonel gives the team members orders to go home and protect their family members, whose identities were known to Aisha. Each of the Losers in turn decide that they will continue on and help the colonel try to take down Max.

    The Losers break into a supermarket to get some items to patch up Jensen with, then continue to go ahead with the mission to take out Max, hoping to find some information on the servers at the pier to clear their names. The team get into action and plan their attack.

    Meanwhile, the Indian engineers have regained some of their bravado to challenge Max and they demand $1 billion in exchange for providing Max with some Snukes. Max, as always, doesn't demonstrably react to something that probably made him inwardly furious. Instead, he agrees to the demand and determines he can get the money from the CIA's coffers somehow.

    The Losers proceed with their attack on Max's base. Cougar takes out a sentry who had spotted Jensen as he was scaling the pier hanger building. Once safely inside, Jensen opens the doors for Clay and Roque, then heads for the main computer room. When Roque opens the door to a large container sitting on the pier and calls Clay over to have a look, Clay observes large pallets of U.S. currency and immediately suspects something is not right, that something had changed from what they expected to be happening. As he moves in for a closer look, Roque clubs him from behind, knocking him unconscious.

    When Clay regains consciousness, Max and Travis are making arrangements to exchange that container full of money for four of the so-called Snukes, and a Ducati motorcycle, situated within another container. However, Max suddenly changes the terms of the deal and tells the Indian engineers that he'll be keeping both the money and the Snukes. Further, in return for not killing them, they must arm the first Snuke. The engineer who arms the Snuke is shot in the head anyway. Max maintains control of a handheld pressure detonating device, set to less than 10 seconds.

    Clay witnesses the rest of his team members now in custody, all captured based on the information provided by Roque. He learns of Max's plan to frame him and his team for a major theft of CIA money. As Clay is being driven away in a car, Cougar, Pooch, and Jensen are being lined up to be executed. Pooch resists and refuses to get down on his knees as ordered, so one of the captors shoots him in both knees. Cougar is resisting allowing his hat to be removed and, as he is about to be shot in head, the shooter is distracted by Cougar's eyes, which are focused up and behind the shooter. As the shooter turns to look, he sees Aisha fire an RPG that explodes nearby.

    Cougar, Pooch, and Jensen fight against their captors, while Clay knocks out his captors in the car, forcing it to crash, and he escapes with a gun.

    In the heat of the ensuing battle, Aisha gets the drop on Clay and forces him to admit that it was he who killed Aisha's father. He tells her he wouldn't blame her if she shot him dead right then. Instead, she decides that they need everyone available to continue dealing with Max and his men, but she promises Clay that they would deal with the matter later.

    Roque supervises the loading of the money on Max's jet plane, but as the Losers are gaining the upper hand in the battle around him, he decides to try and escape with the money. First, he has to deal with Clay, who has managed to reach the jet and engaged Roque in a brutal fight. Roque is very good with knives and wounds Clay, eventually knocking Clay out of the jet and onto the pier. But Clay gouged Roque's right eye closed, maybe even out, before he was ejected from the plane.

    Roque orders to pilot to taxi to the end of the pier, turn around and take off. As Roque's jet heads down the pier, Wade had boarded the Ducati motorcycle and was attempting to intercept and stop the jet. Clay, meanwhile, was just coming to his senses on the pier, only to find the jet bearing down on him from one side, and Wade on the motorcycle from the other. He calmly speaks into a wireless earphone for Cougar to take the shot.

    Cougar is perched atop a container, suspended from a large dockside crane, and he sights and shoots at the motorcycle, hitting the gasoline tank and causing an explosion which hurls Wade forward into the jet's left engine. The engine jams and catches fire, while the flaming motorcycle crashes into the cockpit of the plane, exploding and killing Roque and the pilot. Burning money rains down on Clay, who had safely dived out of the way.

    As Jensen, Cougar and Aisha help the wounded Pooch, Clay spots Max climbing the stairs of a crane. Max is calling out on his radio for his helicopter pilot to come rescue him. Clay chases Max up to the top deck of the crane and gets the drop on Max. Max's rescue ride arrives, but decides to take off as Clay fires off a burst of automatic weapon fire at it. Max responds by revealing that he's holding a hand-held pressure detonating device to the armed Snuke. If he releases his grip on the device, the bomb will detonate within 8 seconds and basically take out Los Angeles.

    Clay shoots Max in the shoulder. Max is driven back and complains that the bullet really hurt, but he still had pressure on the device in his hand. Max then decides to get rid of the device and he flings it out towards the water. Clay doesn't hesitate even a second as he launches his body off the crane and dives after the device. He hits the water maybe a second after the device does and is able to grab it and reapply pressure to the trigger. Once he's back on the dock, he's given a roll of duct tape to use in securing the trigger.

    A phone in possession of the team rings and Clay is told the caller wishes to speak to him. It's Max, calling from aboard a bus somewhere in Los Angeles. He doesn't have much to say, just wishing that he and Clay could have found a way to work together. Clay tells Max that now that he knows what he looks like, he'd be seeing him soon. Max is approached on the bus by two big and mean-looking Latino men. When one of them tells him he's wearing a nice looking watch, Max just holds his arm out so the guy can remove it.

    The Losers help Pooch gain access into the hospital for the birth of his child, a healthy baby boy, blaming traffic for his delay in getting there. Later, they attend Jensen's 8-year old niece's soccer match, where Jensen picks a fight with a very butch female referee.

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