An Action-Packed Repertoire of Explosions and Gunfire, ANGEL HAS FALLEN Is Made To Entertain
Following the events of the previous films, Secret Service agent Mike Banning finds himself framed for an assassination attempt on President Allan Trumbull. Banning eventually turns to unlikely allies in a race to protect the president and seek out the real threat.
Director: Ric Roman Waugh
Cast: Gerald Butler, Morgan Freeman, Jada Pinkett Smith, Lance Reddick, Tim Blake Nelson, Piper Perabo, Nick Nolte, Danny Huston
Country: United States
Runtime: 121 mins
Angel Has Fallen is the third film in the Fallen franchise following Olympus Has Fallen (2013) and London Has Fallen (2016).
In this film, the attempted assassination of President Allan Trumbull (Morgan Freeman) during a fishing trip is pinned on Secret Service agent Mike Banning (Gerald Butler), who had saved him from the attempt. Amidst betrayals, Mike Banning attempts to clear his name while running away from the FBI — fronted by Helen Thompson (Jada Pinkett Smith) — and his own agency, and along the way gets help from an unlikely source.
It’s a plot that we’ve heard of countless times: important person nearly gets killed, protagonist gets framed for the crime (which, obviously, he did not commit), protagonist goes against all odds to prove himself innocent whilst at the same time managing to nab the true perpetrator and save the day. This formula is common for action-thriller genre films, and Angel Has Fallen doesn’t really stray away from the path that’s been laid out by its predecessors.
None of the revelations are particularly earth-shattering, and to be honest, I don’t think they are meant to be. Instead of hoping to subvert expectations, Angel Has Fallen has chosen a more straightforward path: to simply make an entertaining film. And it accomplished its mission.
What’s there not to be entertained by? The pyrotechnics explosions are loud and attention-grabbing, the fight sequences — except for the last battle between Mike and the antagonist, which honestly dragged on for too long — are action-packed and thrilling, and there is a sprinkling of comedic banter and interactions that offer a reprieve from the otherwise endless combat and explosions.
Mike Banning is also not simply a fighting machine in this one — he has back pains, struggles with insomnia, and often has to take pills in order to cope. It grounds him to earth a little more, and if we can’t relate to his impeccable combat abilities, all his pain and suffering helps humanise him such that he becomes a somewhat more relatable character.
Amidst firepower and kickass gunfights, this film certainly serves to entertain — and it doesn’t fall flat on the comedy front either, with preposterous antics and comical banter that liven up the severity of the film’s storyline. If you’re looking for an enjoyable ride through mindless violence and gratuitous explosions, Angel Has Fallen would be right up your alley.
Angel Has Fallen is out in cinemas now. Meanwhile, here’s the trailer: