Angel Has Fallen ‘aims to entertain, and nothing else


Gerard Butler has an attractive screen presence that can make even unwanted movies fun. Perhaps it’s the violent bravado or his facetious attitude that basically shouts, “I do not take anything seriously.”

Either way, it works, especially in “Angel Has Fallen,” the latest entry in the actor’s franchise based on Mike Banning, a heroic secret service agent who continually saves the president from the traffic jams putting his life in danger.

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We met Mike for the first time in 2013, “Olympus Has Fallen”, a really effective piece of dough. Subtle is not, but it will surprise you: the film reaches a hysterical climax when the Secretary of Defense is dragged by the terrorists while he shouted the oath of allegiance.

“Angel” is never as exaggerated or as good as this movie, but it moves quickly and Mike is still the kind of old school hero for whom it’s easy to take root.

Here, he is fighting opioid addiction, oh, as today’s filmmakers are good, caused by too many injuries at work. Mike thinks with an old friend (Danny Huston) about aging and plans to become a director of the secret service, which would put him behind a desk. “If I could manage, I would continue charging until I die,” exclaims Mike.


Of course, before that can happen, the president (Morgan Freeman, who receives a promotion from previous films) is the target of a dazzling drone attack that annihilates all the agents on duty, except for Mike. The president ends up being hospitalized in a coma.

Mike is accused of orchestrating the attack. After all, how was he the only agent who survived? He was accused of conspiring with the Russians, which led Mike to escape federal detention (another accelerated moment) and to attempt to overtake the FBI and rescue the commander-in-chief, who is obviously in danger.

The director Ric Roman Waugh, who has interpreted the prisoner drama “Shot Caller”, never lets time slow down, even if the tone can be omnipresent. There is a big comedy when Mike hides in the cabin of his veteran father from Vietnam (Nick Nolte, phlegmatic and funny). A couple of twists surprises; On the other hand, the villain’s identity is telegraphed so early that it’s basically not a problem.

You must also deal with a fairly fast dialogue. Jada Pinkett Smith plays a stubborn FBI agent who chases Mike when he suddenly has a halfway revelation: “What if the ban were established?” Moments like this make you want the comparative refinement of an “NCIS: Los Angeles”. ”

The film also has that vaguely uncomfortable atmosphere that sometimes occurs when a movie is recorded in a different location from where it is supposed to be. “Angel Has Fallen” was shot in Bulgaria and the UK, without capturing the required environment in the United States.

Nevertheless, before the credits arrive, the film realizes what it intends to do, especially for the spectators who attended each part of the trilogy. Is “Angel Has Fallen” the kind of thing you will remember in a year? Probably not, but it will entertain you for a few hours on an evening in August, and that’s all you’re looking for. Mission accomplished.


‘Angel Has Fallen’

Secret Service agent Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) is on the lam in “Angel Has Fallen.” (Photo: Simon Varsano)