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Friday, March 4, 2016

I Didn't Hate LONDON HAS FALLEN. But...

I have a feeling I am going to be in the minority here when I say that I actually kinda dig LONDON HAS FALLEN, in a Taken kind of way that is often contrived but has enough great one-liners to almost forget all the blatant flaws in the script.

Enter Gerard Butler, who I had all but written off, plays Secret Service Agent Mike Banning to the U.S. president Benjamin Asher (Aaron Eckhart). As a wiseass who seems to always drop the mostly conveniently rehearsed lines, Butler has somewhat resurrected his C-movie career with this action-packed sequel to 2013's Olympus Has Fallen which places President Asher in danger as the prime target of an assassination triggered by the virtual decimation of London in a series of terrorists attacks.

Whew, that was a mouthful. Basically, there is a lot of gunfire and explosions--which all miraculously avoid our two protagonists in the film. Meanwhile, Mike spends most of the film essentially sticking his tongue out at all the bad guys in the film (at one point, he literally refers to them as "bad guys"). That and slipping in casual racism whenever he can. According to him, these "bad guys" hail from the dangerous country of "F*ckheadistan." Because, jokes.

I'm not going to get on my soapbox once again to talk about how harmful it is to spew these kind of Islamophobic comments--in the middle of a real life U.S. presidential campaign through which, ahem, a certain candidate has made an entire platform out of slurring the hell out of every minority group ever. But, you know I'm thinking it.

It is nice to Angela Bassett in all her glory command the big screen like we know she can. She plays Secret Service Director Lynn Jacobs, who accompanies President Asher and Mike on the fateful trip to London. It just reminded me how much we badly deserve to see her as a superhero character saving the lives of others, and not a whimpering victim running for her life. Make it happen, Hollywood.

Eckhart and Butler make a pretty decent team on the big screen. Eckhart is particularly interesting to watch as he becomes the first U.S. president (?) who actually pulls the trigger on quite a few of the "bad guys" --saving both himself and Mike,

So, LONDON HAS FALLEN is another one of those forgettable end-of-winter action films that don't really make much common sense but are really fun to watch when you are distracted with popcorn.

Rating: C+

LONDON HAS FALLEN is in theaters today. 


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