I have a soft spot for dumb action movies, but only when they know what they are supposed to be. Unfortunately, “Angel has Fallen” does not hit the mark. I laughed when I was not supposed to, predicted every plot beat with ease, and found myself impatiently awaiting the film’s conclusion.
Sure, a couple of action sequences are memorable with enthralling cinematography, gripping, heart-pounding sound design, and impressive stunt work. But others are very poorly handled, and, quite frankly, headache-inducing. The choppy editing, shaky camera, and poor lighting in these scenes made them difficult to absorb.
The acting talent is solid, but the script they are given to work with is tonally imbalanced, paced unsteadily, and filled to the brim with incredibly unsubtle political and social commentary. “Russian Collusion” is literally one of the main plot points of the film, and the phrase “Make this nation strong again,” (in reference to the US), is uttered aloud by a corrupt politician. Do not get me wrong, commentary on society and politics is a fundamental aspect of all art. When incorporated efficiently, it can challenge, convict, and inspire the audience. But, in this particular instance, the characters might as well have winked into the camera and said, “Did you understand that reference?”
Even as a fan of both “Olympus has Fallen” and “London has Fallen,” I walked away from this movie disappointed with a lackluster conclusion to an otherwise serviceable action trilogy. I am glad that I watched it, simply for the sake of curiosity, but it is not a film I plan on rushing back to see many more times.
Director – Ric Roman Waugh
Writers – Robert Mark Kamen, Matt Cook, Rick Roman Waugh, Creighton Rothenberger, and Katrin Benedikt
Producers: Gerard Butler, Alan Siegel, Matt O’Toole, John Thompson, Les Weldon, Yariv Lerner
Starring: Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman, Jada Pinkett Smith, Lance Reddick, Tim Blake Nelson, Piper Perabo, with Nick Nolte, and Danny Huston