Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle

About the first Charlie’s Angel; it seemed like a one and half hour shampoo advert filmed in slow motion. This time round direct McG takes much of the same and just increases the volume. Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle is a film that doesn’t take itself too seriously (thankfully), but suffers from the same problems as the first.

Once again, over-the-top crime fighting babes – giggly Natalie (Cameron Diaz), sassy Dylan (Drew Barrymore) and tough Alex (Lucy Liu) – find themselves somewhere in Tibet. They are there to rescue Ray Carter (Robert Patrick) and after an unbelievably daft CGI escape (more painful than the CGI escape in Die Another Day), the girls and Ray return to the States.

As it transpires the reason that Ray was captured was the kidnappers were after the ring on his finger. A second ring is then stolen from William Bailey (cameo by Bruce Willis) and Charlie sends the Angels out to find out why.

It turns out that the two rings combined, they reveal every person’s real identity on the Witness Protection Program and before soon the people on that list start being killed off.

The Angels investigation leads them to Madison Lee (Demi Moore) who was once an Angel herself but has since decided that she will not take orders from a speaker box. Soon the three angels realise that the ‘Fallen Angel’ Madison is much more formidable than they ever though. Luckily they have an ally in the shape of Bosley’s brother Jimmy Bosley (Bernie Mac). Unfortunately Madison has her own allies and ones that might know a thing or two about the Angels past.

Can the Angels take on their most formidable enemy; one that knows their moves inside out and more importantly for some, their past?

Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle is pop-corn cinema at its best (or is that worst?). It’s a film that has very little plot, terrible action (ever scene is a rip off of The Matrixbullet-time’ to the extent that it becomes boring and repetitive) and dialogue that tries to be meaningful but just comes across as clichéd.

At least the cast seemed to enjoy themselves. All the girls look great with the exception of Drew Barrymore – who spends the film looking like a tomboy for some reason. The film is packed with scenes that appeal to women (women kicking butt, while looking good and besting all the men they come across) and men (bikini clad lovelies every five minutes or so). Almost every fetish is touched upon – cowgirls, surfer chicks, car washing babes, skin-tight spandex, fur coats and even nuns (if that floats your boat).

Cameron Diaz is good as Natalie, still sexy as hell and still flaunting herself on-screen at every opportune moment. Lucy Liu and Drew Barrymore follow suite and take all opportunity to giggle and act childish in-between kicking are. Demi Moore, who has been absent from the silver screen for a few years now, hasn’t looked better – mind you she does spend a lot of time in her lair, dressed in an open fur coat and skimpy undergarments (not that I’m complaining). Luke Wilson and Matt LeBlanc reprise their roles as the relative love interests, but just fill out the ‘heroine’ rolls normally found in action movies i.e. look pretty but dumb.

There is a little hope in the shape of Bernie Mac, who takes over from Bill Murray’s role – allegedly they are brothers or something or other. Mac is definitely the one who supplies the laughs, which explains his predominance in the trailers. It seems that Bill Murray refused to work with Lucy Liu after their onset friction during the first film. Also providing laughs is Crispin Glover who returns as The Thin Man and John Cleese who plays Lucy Liu’s father (don’t ask).

Every law of physics is broken – what is it with Hollywood and the laws of physics? They just don’t seem to get along. When not trying to be The Matrix, films seem to try and be Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. In this case the action is so over used and plays out as just too gratuitous. Even jumping from a roof has overdone flair and slow motion – its adding silliness for silliness sake. Director McG has a background in pop music and it shows. He also seems fixated on arses (not necessarily a bad thing judging by the films poster below.

A daft script doesn’t help things either – such as one of the Angels concluding that a suspect has had surgery on an Achilles tendon within the last  year from a shoeprint, or the fact that Madison’s key henchman walks through a wall of fire without any explanation.

On the whole Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle is, for all its flaws it is entertaining enough on some levels…but this is the important part…do not take it seriously, hell, the cast don’t so why should the audience. Just remember, as the film is instantly forgettable the memory will not stay long with you.

Score 6/10

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