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Angel Has Fallen (A Movie Review)

Updated: Feb 25, 2020

Angel Has Fallen


Starring Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman, Danny Huston, Piper Perabo, Nick Nolte, Tim Blake Nelson, Jada Pinkett Smith, Michael Landes, Lance Reddick, Frederick Schmidt, Rocci-Boy Williams, Harry Ditson, Linda John-Pierre, Ori Pfeffer, Jasmine Hyde, Ian Porter, Laurel Lefkow, Michael Landes, Mark Arnold and Kerry Shale.

Screenplay by Robert Mark Kamen and Matt Cook & Ric Roman Waugh.

Directed by Ric Roman Waugh.

Distributed by Lionsgate. 121 minutes. Rated R.

Holy Moly.

My dad insisted that I watch Olympus Has Fallen (2013) and London Has Fallen (2016), so it was without hesitation that I asked him to join me as my subject matter expert and true fan of the Fallen series. We were both more excited than two people should be to watch Angel Has Fallen, the third installment of the action-packed, political thriller series.

While I wrongly assumed that the film would be set in Los Angeles, as the other two titles seemed to reflect their locations, the actual Angel in question is the President’s “guardian angel,” Secret Service Agent Mike Banning (played by Gerard Butler).

Time has marched on for Agent Banning. He is in line for a promotion. He has a wife (Leah Banning, played by Piper Perabo) and a young, mostly pre-verbal, daughter. And he has developed a dependency on pain medicine from his years of on-the-job impact trauma and his multiple concussions.

When he and President Trumball (played by Morgan Freeman) are the two sole survivors following a dramatic drone attack that appears to have been an assassination attempt on the President, it becomes clear that Banning has been set up, in cahoots with Russia no less. Banning must clear his name from America’s Most Wanted list as both the administration and intelligence agencies initiate a manhunt for his capture.

In the attempt to clear his concussed and drug-withdrawing brain, Banning escapes the intelligence community to the one person that no one would expect him to run to. I am not going to be responsible for any spoilers, but Nick Nolte was a pleasant surprise in the role. He plays “down and out” better than most.

Leading the search is FBI Agent Thompson, played by the fierce Jada Pinkett Smith. She is in a difficult position presenting the facts as they have been laid out and still being able to keep an open mind when presented with an equally suspicious option. She leaves no stone unturned and feels believable in the role.

My dad preferred the two earlier films because he liked the focus on the US government vs. a foreign government idea. He felt Angel Has Fallen had too much focus on Banning’s family. He felt the storyline in the first two films were more believable and enjoyable. However, overall, he still enjoyed Angel Has Fallen.

To me, this film was the best of the three. It had great effects and action sequences, an intense car/truck chase, lots of explosions, and an insanely terrifying drone attack. It was patriotic without being preachy and managed to quietly razz homegrown heavily armed militia men. There were bouts of humor scattered throughout the dialogue and the soundtrack was gripping in all of the right ways. For sure, the film was predictable, but with all of the action, it didn’t really matter.

Angel Has Fallen is definitely a film worth watching on the big screen with big sound. And call your dad. Or better yet, invite him.

Bonnie Paul

Copyright ©2019 All rights reserved. Posted: August 23, 2019.

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