'Charlie's Angels' US movie poster

Charlie's Angels


Director: McG (aka Joseph McGinty)

Martial arts director: Yuen Cheung-Yan

Stars: Drew Barrymore, Lucy Liu, Cameron Diaz, Bill Murray, Tim Curry, Crsipin Glover

A new version of the "classic" (I use that term loosely) '70s TV show, with the Angels going after a crooked businessman who seems to have kidnapped his main rival. To start with, I want to apologize a bit for this review. I try not to "spoil" the movie in any way in my reviews, but in discussion about this film, I feel that I must point out specific shortcomings in the script that hinge on specific plot points. So, if you haven't seen this movie, you may want to skip this review. (Basically, the short version is: the movie as a whole is terrible except for a couple of the action sequences.)

Anyway, I hated this movie. Yes, I know it was supposed to be a "fun" (campy) movie but still it was just horrible. There have been other movies that attempted this and succeeded, such as Army of Darkness. However, Charlie's Angels failed on so many levels it's scary. The film's main problem was its' script. For instance, after the second act ends with the killing of Tim Curry (the aforementioned crooked businessman), the film's narrative grinds to an absolute halt with the Angels and their various romantic entanglements. Again, I know this is supposed to be a fun and "breezy" movie, but this doesn't excuse a poor script. Anyone who has seen the DVD of Army of Darkness saw that Sam Raimi knew that there were some elements that needed to be cut out at the second/third act break and did so.

There were other holes as well -- the most notable being the return of Crispin Glover (who plays Curry's henchman and is suppodely killed off early in the movie) with no explanation whatsoever. Also, the "heel turn" of the computer nerd that the Angels set off to save into the movie's main villain was stupid and pointless, since nothing has been built on to make him an effective villain. Also, I thought he wanted to torture and kill Charlie -- why go through all that hassle (double-crossing the Angels to steal software so he can use a GPS system to track down Charlie) to launch a missile at him instead?

I did enjoy some things about the movie; the fight scene early on against Crispin Glover was fun if unbelievable, some (and I mean some) of the jokes were good, Bill Murray tried the best he could with the dreck he was given, and the soundtrack for the most part was good.

As for the Angels themselves: Lucy Liu, in my opinion, is way over-rated. She plays the same "ice princess" character every time and her freckled face and crossed eyes do nothing for me in the looks department. The other two Angels do look pretty good and provide some nice "eye candy," even if they turn in terrible performances.

This does seem to be a love/hate kind of movie. After the movie, I said "What the HELL was that crap? I want my money back," and at least half the theatre seemed to agree with me.


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