You’re either S.W.A.T. or you’re not. On this evidence, I’m not.

S.W.A.T., completing Colin Farrell’s journey of being good in bad films this year (Intermission excepted), is a film that does not really know how to proceed with its premise. Its premise is of course a TV series from thirty years ago which had a decent, though painfully retro, theme tune. Its plot was simple. You have a SWAT team, and they sort out on a week for week basis a large set of unrelated but tricky shoot-out situations. Its about as bog-standard as a standalone episodic policier can be. And this is the problem SWAT has, how does it escape feeling like just another ho-hum police drama.

It tries by stapling on the “assembling the misfit team against all odds” formula to the first half of the film, and then being the best in the business who can sort out the crisis at the end, depite not being trusted. Except both of these plots are fundamentally at odds with each other. The first half plot after all is the same plot as the Police Academy films, and this certainly should not be as laughable. So instead our so-called misfits are notable for containing a crack ex-SWAT member (Farrell), a black cop (LL Cool J) and a woman (Michelle Rodriguez). We’re not talking bloke who does sound effects or tiny voiced lady.

Basically the film boils down to a few shooting set pieces and poorly judged bonding moments. An absolute mess, only slightly saved by its very charismatic cast. Andrew Farrell suggested to me that this was a film full of people who steal all the other films they are in, and that is true. They all have their moments here. But in the end, Jackson, Farrell, Rodriguez and J should use their credibility to actually get in decent films again.