Director: Ric Roman Waugh
Cast: Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman, Jada Pinkett Smith
Release Date: November 26, 2019
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 7.5/10
Disc Rating: 8.5/10
When there is an assassination attempt on U.S. President Allan Trumbull (Morgan Freeman), his trusted confidant, Secret Service Agent Mike Banning (Gerard Butler), is wrongfully accused and taken into custody. After escaping from capture, he becomes a man on the run and must evade his own agency and outsmart the FBI in order to find the real threat to the president. Desperate to uncover the truth, Banning turns to unlikely allies to help clear his name, keep his family from harm, and save the country from imminent danger.
‘Angel Has Fallen’ rejoins American hero and Secret Service agent Mike Banning (Butler) currently serving under now President Allan Trumbull (Freeman) when one relaxing day of fishing turns into an assault on his team and the attempted assassination of President Trumbull himself. After barely surviving the slaughter that left his entire team dead, Mike soon finds himself the number one suspect in the attack when all fingers and evidence continue pointing to him. Unwilling to just rot away while the real culprit framing him is surely planning how to finish the job, Banning breaks out and acquires help through his troubled father (Nolte), intent to uncover the truth and take down those truly responsible against all odds.
Directed this time around by first time director to the franchise Ric Roman Waugh (Snitch, Felon) from a screenplay he also co-wrote with Robert Mark Kamen (TV’s Cobra Kai) and Matt Cook (Patriots Day), and based upon an initial story by franchise creators Creighton Rothenberger and Katrin Benedikt respectively, Waugh does a great job at the helm of ‘Angel Has Fallen’ smoothly guiding along this tense and personal (yet still quite explosive) new entry from start to finish. The film also benefits from a generally capable cast that includes returning stars Gerard Butler (Den Of Thieves) and Morgan Freeman (Now You See Me), in addition to series newcomers Nick Nolte (Gangster Squad), Danny Huston (TV’s Yellowstone), Jada Pinkett Smith (Girls Trip), Lance Reddick (John Wick), Tim Blake Nelson (TV’s Watchmen), Piper Perabo (TV’s Covert Affairs) and more, with the majority offering fitting and capable enough performances for the most part in each of their respective roles.
‘Angel Has Fallen’ is a solid third entry in the action franchise that makes for a notable improvement over the still incredibly fun previous sequel, bringing more personal intensity and heart to this installment yet never failing to deliver enough of the explosive, bloody and beautifully crafted action sequences the series has become known for either. While always serving up plenty of humor amidst the chaos and never at the expense of the more important and emotional moments. ‘Angel Has Fallen’ is capably guided along its tense and explosive course by director Ric Roman Waugh and his work behind the camera is further complimented by a solid and well selected cast led by returning stars Gerard Butler and Morgan Freeman. Fans of the previous two films in the franchise (Olympus Has Fallen & London Has Fallen) definitely won’t want to miss out ‘Angel Has Fallen’ which serves up more than enough action-packed fun and excitement (and a more personal and intense story than the previous sequel) to easily make it a must see for fans (and action-movie fans in general) who also shouldn’t be disappointed if you own the previous two films but missed this one in theaters and decide to drop the money on a blind purchase of the Blu-ray release. For those understandably hesitant to do so or simply uninterested in owning it on the other hand, it should at least be well worth the price of a rental.
Overall, ‘Angel Has Fallen’ is another tense, explosive and massively entertaining installment in the Gerard Butler led action franchise that proves that this series definitely hasn’t lost its charm or ability to slap a smile on the face of old school action movie fans. ‘Angel Has Fallen’ is highly recommended to fans of the franchise and anyone who tends to appreciate an explosive and frequently humorous action flick largely reminiscent of notable action vehicles from decades prior courtesy of its style and lead hero; while still quite modern in regards to the content and quality of the extravagant action sequences throughout. It’s another incredibly fun and action-packed ride in this continually enjoyable series and a definite improvement over the previous (yet still thoroughly entertaining) sequel. It’s certainly well worth taking the time to check out whenever possible.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Angel Has Fallen’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 2.39:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks wonderful as a whole and provides a sharp, clean and richly detailed presentation from start to finish, with no notable faults or problems to be found along the way. It holds up impressively even during the various darkly lit and fast moving action sequences, never causing anything occurring onscreen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a great high definition video presentation from Lionsgate that more than delivers throughout and should thoroughly please the fans.
The Blu-ray release features a Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 channel compatible) soundtrack. Please note that this review pertains solely to the Dolby TrueHD 7.1 audio presentation. This multichannel soundtrack serves up a crisp, smooth and hard hitting audio presentation throughout. It constantly takes advantage of all seven available channels in order to send bullets, explosions, drones and plenty of additional action effects zipping throughout the various speakers, along with nature elements, bits of dialogue and more, all the while never allowing any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible in the process. Overall, this is a magnificent Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 compatible) soundtrack that repeatedly contributes its share of additional fun to the viewing experience and sounds fantastic from start to finish.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Angel Has Fallen’ includes a number of worthwhile extras that fans of the franchise should enjoy. Included on the release is ‘Angel Declassified with Director/Co-writer Ric Roman Waugh’ (aka Scene Specific Audio Commentary) for three key sequences in the film (running approximately 9 minutes combined), in addition to a collection of Behind the Scenes Featurettes that explore different aspects of bringing the film to life and featuring interviews/comments with the cast and crew, plus behind the scenes footage and more. The included Featurettes are: ‘Even Heroes Fall: The Story’ (running approximately 8 minutes in length), ‘Someone to Watch Over Me: New Blood’ (running approximately 13 minutes), ‘Calling All Angels: Casting’ (approximately 18 minutes), ‘True Faith: Authenticity’ (13 minutes), ‘Fight for You: Stunts and Action’ (10 minutes) and ‘Earth Angel: Recreating DC’ (6 minutes).