Watching Gerard Butler muscle his way through increasingly preposterous obstacles as a Secret Service agent can be amusing and oddly transfixing at the same time. Enter your location to see which movie theaters are playing Angel Has Fallen near you.
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After the events in the previous film , Secret Service agent Mike Banning undergoes training in a private military facility and is recommended for the position of Director by the President of the United States Allan Trumbull to replace retiring Secret Service director David Gentry Banning hides the fact that he is suffering from migraines and insomnia and visits several doctors to treat these maladies. Angel Has Fallen is almost worth seeing. It could gain this distinction for the end-credits sting alone, which features – wait for it – a half-naked Nick Nolte bestially moaning in a zero-gravity flotation tank. How did we get from Olympus Has Fallen (2013) and London Has Fallen (2016) to this? While a palpable upgrade, it’s not an altogether simple one to explain.
Whichever aspects of the story did remain a mystery were soon ruined by the friend who accompanied me to the theater, one of those self-appointed movie commentators. As it happens, her father once ran a semi-successful presidential bid — not entirely successful, given that he didn’t win, though he did come impressively close — and, as a result of this, she has firsthand experience with the U.S. Secret Service. For some reason her family has a British telephone box — a bit like the police box in Doctor Who, except narrower and red — in their backyard, which her dad once told me a Secret Service agent would stand in whenever it rained.
Now, three years after that, the third film in the franchise, Angel Has Fallen,” takes viewers on another action-packed journey with Butler reprising his role once again as Banning. Piper Perabo as Leah Banning, Mike’s wife. 6 Perabo replaced Radha Mitchell , who played the role in the previous films, due to Mitchell’s scheduling conflicts.
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Mike Banning actually spends all of Angel lamenting his broken-down body. He never actually speaks the words, I’m too old for this shit,” but he embodies the classic Lethal Weapon line in every frame of this film. His vulnerability is a welcome trait. Banning has been through the ringer protecting first The White House and, later, the entirety of London, so he’s contemplating hanging up his detail.
While Angel Has Fallen is definitely one of those movies that would prefer you to turn off your brain and submit to it, it still gives anyone willing to engage with it a lot to think about and consider. Gerard Butler and Morgan Freeman return to the Fallen franchise for its third installment directed by Ric Roman Waugh. This chapter will be darker and more character driven than the previous two.
Unfortunately, their idyllic life is quickly turned upside down with an assassination attempt on the president and the subsequent murders of his security team. The only survivors are the president and Banning. Oh, and Nick Nolte plays Butler’s dad. Turns out it was nurture, not nature, that made Mike Banning this way.
Ordinarily, it’s polite to include spoiler alert” when reviewing movies. However, the plot of Angel is so predictable that I feel I needn’t bother. In a wholly unsurprising twist, for instance, the criminal mastermind turns out to be — dun dun dun — the vice president (Tim Blake Nelson), who hired contractors from a paramilitary company (yes, the sketchy ones we met in Scene 1) to do the dirty work.
Gerard Butler ‘s secret service agent Mike Banning isn’t retired yet. More features, and even local-language TV spin-offs, are being planned after the success of Angel Has Fallen , the franchise’s producer confirmed today. Mike Banning is framed for the attempted assassination of the President and must evade his own agency and the FBI as he tries to uncover the real threat.
There were some surprisingly moving touches in Angel — for instance, Banning’s relationship with his father. A war veteran, Banning’s dad, we learn, struggled with PTSD and abandoned him and his mother. He lives in a remote forest, convinced the government is going to come after him. His preparedness and paranoia come in handy, however, and allow Banning to escape the contractors.
But when you remove Angel Has Fallen from the context of the previous films and take into account Mike’s battered state and that he spends much of the film wrongly accused of masterminding an assassination attempt on the president, what you have is a noir for our age of technological paranoia and all-encompassing militarism.
Unlike its predecessors , Angel Has Fallen chooses not to focus on foreign terrorism and America’s triumph over it, but rather how America’s military might causes just as many problems at home. War was psychologically detrimental to Clay Banning, so much so that he felt he had to abandon his family in order to protect them from himself. The film also shows other characters who’ve been corrupted by their participation in the armed services.
In short, Banning gets set up and arrested for the attempted murder of President Trumbull (and the murder of others), and escapes to unleash the kind of hell, vengeance, and justice, only Mike Banning can unleash on America’s enemies. In between the top notch action sequences lies a really great and moving story about Banning, his dad (played by Nick Nolte who literally steals the movie), and a fairly good plot and thriller. Really timely and really good.
What more can one say about a production that was over the top good? Suffice it to say, this film and just like the previous two, fired on all cylinders. Wish more fantasy action films could be this good, while sparing no expense to thrill us movie goers.
Angel Has Fallen” is an exciting film and is available on Blu-ray, DVD and 4K beginning Tuesday. When there is an assassination attempt on U.S. President Allan Trumbull (Morgan Freeman), his trusted confidant, Secret Service Agent Mike Banning (Gerard Butler), is wrongfully accused and taken into custody.
This seems to be the movie within the movie for Waugh. The physical and mental trauma Banning must overcome to save the president is one element; the willingness of the United States to sacrifice young men to the war machine is another. Neither of these can truly be the dominant themes of Angel Has Fallen – the audience for these films would revolt if Banning did not overcome a superior force with cunning and guile – but Waugh’s approach of wedging substance between set-pieces elevates this to the top of the trilogy. Nolte may end up a doddering old man with abandonment guilt, but in the middle of the film, we get to know a Vietnam veteran who chose to leave his family when he could come to terms with his PTSD. That raises questions we want to know the answers to, even if we know our intellectual war allegories will be pretty short-lived.
Usually, movies depicting the president choose an actor resembling the sitting president. Dick Crockett was a balding, football-loving president in The Pink Panther Strikes Again” (1976), made during the Gerald Ford administration. Bill Pullman was a youngish, light-haired president, like Bill Clinton, in Independence Day.” Dennis Quaid was positively W.-like in American Dreamz” (2006). And Jamie Foxx practically imitated Barack Obama in White House Down” (2013).
In this action thriller, a fugitive is being pursued by the FBI for his supposed role in an attempted presidential assassination. He must evade the authorities and, at the same time, track down the real bad guys. Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman, Jada Pinkett Smith, Lance Reddick, Tim Blake Nelson, Piper Perabo, Nick Nolte and Danny Huston star.
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Director and co-writer Ric Roman Waugh’s addition to the franchise that began with 2013’s “Olympus Has Fallen” portrays marital and family solidarity by way of the response to Banning’s adversity by his loyal wife, Leah (Piper Perabo), and estranged father, Clay (Nick Nolte), with whom he reconnects while on the run. But fidelity and reconciliation take a back seat to an amount of intense, relentless mayhem that may be too much even for many grown-ups.
In ANGEL HAS FALLEN, the third film in the series that began with Olympus Has Fallen and continued with London Has Fallen , Secret Service Agent Mike Banning ( Gerard Butler ) is considering moving to a desk job within the force when a brutal attack leaves President Trumbull ( Morgan Freeman ) grievously injured – and Banning implicated as the leader of the strike. Now it’s up to Banning to uncover exactly who’s trying to kill the president and why, to clear his own name, and to stay alive long enough to get back to his wife ( Piper Perabo ) and daughter.
But as weary as Banning might be, if you believe the Tomatometer scores of the previous two installments of the action saga we now call the Fallen Trilogy,” he is still doing better than a film critic who has had to review all three. Many seem incredulous that these examples of what has been called terror exploitation” are still alive and kicking—unlike, say, any Secret Service agent who has the misfortune to pull a shift with Mike Banning.
But when Mike runs into the West Virginia woods (effortlessly portrayed by the Bulgarian countryside) and turns to his survivalist dad for shelter, we’re offered a temporary reprieve from the bargain-bin inanity. Nolte’s grizzled performance, which seems equally indebted to the Unabomber and the bear from The Revenant,” is just the kind of left-field genius that can save a bad film from itself, at least for a little while.
Angel refers to Gerard Butler’s secret service agent Mike Banning. He saved the president of the United States in 2013’s Olympus has Fallen and almost single-handedly saved the world’s leaders from terrorists in 2016 when London almost joined Olympus and fell.
Directed by Ric Roman Waugh. Written by Robert Mark Kamen, Matt Cook, Ric Roman Waugh, Creighton Rothenberger and Katrin Benedikt. Starring Gerard Butler, Jada Pinkett Smith, Piper Perabo and Morgan Freeman. Now playing. Listen to Angel Has Fallen Movie Soundtrack now.
There’s a fascinating tension between the expected and the unexpected in director Ric Roman Waugh’s films. Whereas the previous Fallen movies moved in a predictable manner – foreign invaders attack the president, beefy Mike Banning holds them off – Angel Has Fallen attempts to tell a slightly more mature story. Waugh seems to barter for creative control by the act: As long as the studio gets a respectable pairing of intro and outro set-pieces, Waugh is free to explore unexpected elements of trauma and masculinity.
During the action set pieces, Waugh makes good use of silence in order to crank up the tension, focusing on relatively realistic sequences that rarely go too far over-the-top. His car chases and shootouts have a rugged economy to them — no one will confuse Angel with the inspired pyrotechnics of a Mission: Impossible, but there’s nevertheless an enjoyable, brutal precision to the action that should appeal to hardcore genre fans.
The tone of Angel” is far more somber than the wise-cracking Olympus” or the frothing, jingoistic London.” The weight makes the film strangely dull at times. (How can a scene of Butler crashing a big rig into a tree be so flat?) But some moments in this outsize take on the The Fugitive” hit a real nerve, such as a shootout in an office building where young bearded white men in tactical gear pump thousands of rounds into drywall and office furniture. Banning is our fantasy for those very real scenarios: a strong, resourceful, yet exceedingly normal man of action.
Nolte is the only real saving grace as the wild-eyed and paranoid Vietnam veteran living in his little bunker in the West Virginia woods. He’s the only one having fun with this material, but even so gets unceremoniously demoted for the final set-piece (although he does pop up again in a bizarre and kind of funny post-credits scene that has more spirit in two minutes than the entirety of Angel Has Fallen”). Everyone else is either too serious or too bored or some joy-killing combination of the two.