Movie Review: Angel has Fallen

“Angel has Fallen” is the third, and possibly the last installment in this franchise, that started with “Olympus has Fallen”, released in 2013. Olympus has Fallen is arguably one the best action movies ever produced, about a gang of North Korean’s who invade and take over the White House. This sequel “London has Fallen”, released 3 years later, was unfortunately not nearly as good as the original. Angel has Fallen is also not as good as the original, but it is much better than London has Fallen. The main problem I had with this film is that there are not enough action scenes for too much of the 2 hours and because of this, the high level of tension that was present in the first movie was not maintained for enough of the movie, until the end.

Gerard Butler, who plays Mike Banning is perfect for this role of a secret service agent, who is put into impossible situations that always involve imminent death and martial arts skills that are always far better than almost all of his combatants. The plot of Angel has Fallen was very obvious to figure out and I thought that Jada Pinkett was miscast as the lead FBI agent. I also didn’t like the producers using a different actress, Piper Perabo to play Banning’s wife only because of a scheduling conflict. In the interest of continuity, it would have been better for fans of the franchise to make the schedule work and not give Banning a different wife. Nick Nolte is also in this installment as Banning’s father, who is living in the woods and looks like a mountain man, who is far older than Nolte’s 79 years. I thought the chemistry between Butler and Nolte was very well done in this story and the funny ending was well done.

The Rotten Tomatoes review of this film is a way too low 46% and once again the critics are wrong. Angel has Fallen is a very solid action movie and the correct rating is 75%.  I recommend Angel has Fallen.

Movie Review: Where’d you go Bernadette

“Where’d you go Bernadette” is one of those strange, trying too hard to be different movies where you wonder how lead actors like Cate Blanchette and Laurence Fishburne could read the screenplay and agree to appear in this film. There is no real story here, just a series of scenes where an architect, Bernadette Fox, played by Blanchette is slowly having a nervous breakdown mostly caused by her manic depressive personality. I found most of this not interesting enough to hold my attention for 2 hours, even though the acting, mostly by Blanchette was good.

It is hard to understand why this movie was made or why actors like Fishburne, Blanchette and the very talented Kristine Wiig agreed to agreed to appear in this film. I agree with the low 44% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and do not recommend this movie.


Movie Review: Blinded by the Light

“Blinded by the Light” is an obscure true story from 1987, about a Pakistani teenager from a small town near London England who becomes obsessed with the songs and lyrics of Bruce Springsteen. Amazingly, through the music of Springsteen, Javed, played by newcomer Viveik Kalra is able to escape from his depressing life in a poor family who live in a depressing and typical apartment complex, constantly harassed by racists in his high school and neighborhood.

Despite his unemployed father’s wishes, Javed wants to be a writer and as I seen in so many movies, “Fences” being the best example, Javed’s father stands in the way of son’s dreams and ambitions because of jealousy and anger over his own life failures. Through the brilliance of Springsteen’s music and the lyrics of his great songs, Javed is able to escape from his life that seems to have nowhere to go but down. What this film shows, better than most I have seen like it, is the importance of great artists in the world, who can inspire others to never give up on the dreams, and to just for a little while, escape from their depressing reality and live one more day.

I agree with the high Rotten Tomatoes ratings for Blinded by the Light of 91%. This movie was very well written and well acted. While slow in some parts, the overall message was a good one, and I do recommend this movie.