Friday, 4 March 2016
REVIEW: LONDON HAS FALLEN
99 Mins. Starring: Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart, Angela Bassett, Melissa Leo, Robert Forster, Radha Mitchell, Charlotte Riley, Jackie Earle Haley & Morgan Freeman. Director: Babak Najafi.
More than London Bridge has fallen down. As 2013's 'Olympus Has Fallen' Air Force One's itself across the pond to the place that staged the 2012 Olympic Games, the President and his Butler find themselves in the line of fire again for 'London Has Fallen'. Seriously...if this guy gets 'Taken' again like Liam Neeson's kid, he'll need to be grounded like that man with a special set of skills and a phones daughter. Listen to me carefully, just hide POTUS in the same tunnels they used to sneak Marylin Monroe in for J.F.K. Oh wait that was the movie 'White House Down'...so many films with all the presidents men...so little movie time. Seriously...what's next 'Sydney Has Fallen Mate'?! Strewth! Still the film that coincidentaly came out in the same year, but also beat 'W.H.D' did so for an elected reason...and it wasn't just due to talented 'Training Day' director Antoine Fuqua being the great 'Equalizer' like Denzel Washington (here he is replaced by Babak Najafi (kind of a Burgundy big deal in Sweden). It was due to Butler doing it as the Secret Service and the new Bruce Willis John McClane of this post 'Die Hard' generation. There was blood...it was brutual but attaboy was it brilliant. Yippe Kayay. Mother#####! Now this Presidental preacher with a machine gun has moved to the British Isles it's about to get even more "bloody". Hell as every world leader and dignitary heads to England's capital for the Prime Ministers funeral you can expect a bath of it. But guess which one they'll really look to take care of?! Yep that's right you guessed it...the leader of the free world. No not Donald Trump...you farts! But boy does this franchise that can't be impeached wish in hindsight they didn't name their vice President "Trumbo". It's not even Bryan Cranston...so don't say his name! Still this one breaks so much bad it can't help but knock!
Abiding the law like the model citizen he is Gerard Butler takes everything thrown at him on his Presidents secret service like 300 men in congress...even the Palm Frittes. Sure this man may have acted on stages in Operas but here he is a Phantom Menace, leaving scars in the star wars of a blockbuster, superhero season started early. Only the indestructible 'Deadpool' can withstand him. Only the Punisher leaves more skulls and still has more bullets in the clip. Reading his opponent, Gerard Butler lets his magazine sing with his machine gun practice. He's tough as nails hammering them into a trail of goons' resting places. Much in the same 'should I be guilty to enjoy this' pleasure of an 'Expendables' movie this force of a franchise with a solid sequel (one that may not stand up to the original, but does sit nicely next to it) is far from the chop shop thanks to its lead strong lead. More mature than a Rock or Vin Diesel, but decades far from the retirement homes of Stallone and Schwarnegger, this all-action hero is a true braveheart in an age were we're losing the likes of Mel Gibson and Bruce Willis to father time. Gerard is taking all the kids to school...we hope you packed your lunch. Even with a kid on their way, converting the spare room to a crib this almost hitman for hire action gunner still makes house calls. He really hammers it door to door too, selling us this brute but beaute of a movie. I mean this is a guy that can even flog you a glass of water here...convincing you you're "thirsty as f###"...must be the salted popcorn you always eat. No...just me?! The guys still sweet. And he's still ready to lay it on the line like Clint Eastwood for the man that calls the Oval Office home. That would be Aaron Eckhart whose 'Dark Knight' Harvey Dent has seemed to have been elected from Mayor of Gotham City to President Of The United States. Wait...what?! That's not him? I didn't see the otherside of his face! What? That's not even a real city? What about those hash-tag 'Fly To Gotham' Turkish Airline commercials? What do you mean wrong franchise? Anyway after 'I Frankenstein' didn't turn out to be the monster he hoped like Igor, Eckhart's 'Battle: Los Angeles' purple heart and Batman political pedigree is enough to make another term here in the sequel. He looks like he could even run for office in the West Wing? I mean who else would you rather have? Martin Sheen's done his eight years. Larry David? No burn that enthusiasm. There's no one else in this house of cards. It's all falling down to these smoking aces.
In a whole new space after winning the battle for the White House with his 'Law Abiding Citizen' opposing co-star Jamie Foxx (is he on the wrong detail here?), Butler is taken to the country that won the war. And as he and Eckhart channel Foxx and Channing Tatum's buddy-cop on a political front, charismatic dynamic they make for a perfect pair offsetting London's Big Smoke of an explosive backdrop. In this rush hour you may aswell call these guys scotch and bad choices as their chemistry is almost as much a catalyst as the combustible action. From the dark depths of the smoked out underground, to the pizza delivery boy motorcycle gangs complete with choppers and extra cheese. And we can't get enough of the most outstanding one shot that could even deck and pass through the halls of 'Daredevil' and the hood of 'True Detective', flying like 'Birdman'...all virtue, no ignorance. From Westminister Abbey to Charing Cross everything is bull-dogged. No one is safe...not even that big guy called Ben. Or Franklin back home in Washington that matter who gets a little burn in the "on your left" jogging first scene. Back in D.C. the Situation Room offers desk duty to the likes of Academy Award winner Melissa Leo, military grade, senior officer, veteran actor Robert Forster and 'Watchman' and 'Shutter Island' standout Jackie Earle Haley who all seem to be (by screen-time only...not actual effort or performance) picking up a cheque...but cashing in some serious talent. Besides, at least Leo gets to whisper to someone to get out her seat. Classic! And then of course there's Morgan Freeman waiting in the 'Deep Impact' west wings of crossing his fingers that he'll be sworn in as President yet again thanks to the latest paint by numbers gang of terrible terroists. Still the comforting, syrupy warm narration of Freeman could epically evoke almost anything...even a fishing trip that you...and he should really take. Everyones working overtime here though. From last movies wonder women Angela Bassett (who has everything to do with this) and loving wife Radha Mitchell to the British intelligence of new, ally affiliate addition Charlotte Riley on the form of her life. All this make for one epic entourage for Olympus's commander and chief in foreign Thames waters. The 'Has Fallen' franchise has gone international and is busting blocks and bad cops on a global scale. The only question remains will we fall for another one? White House up! TIM DAVID HARVEY.