Action heroes have long been down in Hollywood. Superheroes have taken their place and now it is rare for franchises to appear, featuring a character typology that in the 80s and 90s swept the box office. There are small oases in the desert like the unique case of Liam Neeson or the great saga 'John Wick', but what was achieved by ‘Angel Has Fallen’ has much merit.
At the time it seemed destined to be the poor sister of ‘Assault on Power’, but Antoine Fuqua’s tape was much more effective than Roland Emmerich’s and the only one that was profitable at the box office. Three years later it was the turn of 'London Has Fallen', a lower sequel but that at least served to entertain you, and now comes the end of the trilogy with 'Angel Has Fallen', a tape that would probably have worked in video clips during the 90s - as an alternative when it was rented the one you really wanted to see, yes - but today can hardly serve to hang out.
It was clear that the first installment drank a lot of 'Crystal Jungle' and that the second one happened to have as a reference to the television '24', but in the case of 'Angel Has Fallen' everything is somewhat more generic, as if it would be enough to offer the minimum required of an action movie that never takes advantage of the spectacularity in its favor. Yes, there are explosions and amazing effects, but without anyone behind who knows how to channel it in the proper way to achieve the desired impact.
It helps that the treatment of the action by director Ric Roman Waugh is somewhat monotonous. The film is supposed to be the most expensive in the saga - there is talk of a budget of 80 million dollars compared to 70 in the first and 60 in the second - but Waugh does not finish taking advantage of it. Yes, technology has a greater presence, like the essential scene of the drone attack, but it tends to be more appalling than anything else.
However, there are enough action scenes for the film to be dynamic enough that one does not disconnect from what is happening on the screen, but it always lacks that necessary spark, either by physical exhibitions of its protagonist - or his double action, which Gerard Butler is already 50 years old-, for posing striking situations or for a camera operation that puts you fully in what happens. Here everything stays a little medium gas.
Where it works best ‘Angel Has Fallen’ is in the cast, but don't expect anything spectacular either. Butler meets as a tired hero but still capable of capital feats, but what really animates the show is the arrival in the Nick Nolte franchise. The actor's career has been somewhat erratic, but his talent is still there and here he is even able to give some lines of dialogue quite discreet in the final stretch, but previously it is that strange factor that takes the film out of monotony.
What is a shame is that Holt McCallany had to abandon the project because he could not combine it with the wonderful second season of ‘MINDHUNTER’ that recently arrived at Netflix after the shooting was postponed due to a motorcycle accident that Butler had. His role was finally at the hands of a Danny Huston who meets with solvency in the scenes he shares with Butler but does not end up standing out in those he has separately.
Finally, we know that many do not give too much importance to the script in a production of these characteristics, but the ideal is that at least a functional script would be able to squeeze in other ways. Unfortunately, the one of ‘Angel Has Fallen’ is the least interesting of the franchise, especially regarding the surprise they want to sell us about the identity of the great villain of the show. However the rest remains mediocre.
Ultimately, 'Angel Has Fallen' is a discreet closure for a trilogy that could go ahead if its managers propose it, but being the least entertaining of the three it doesn't work well enough at the box office as to compensate them to do so.