“Welcome to the Townsend Agency. We exists because traditional law enforcement can’t keep up.”
Charlie’s Angels is the reboot, of a reboot, of a television show, and tells the story of an elite group of women set to take down the bad guys through international espionage. This time around, the Angels must protect a young woman who is whistleblowing on a corrupt company whose device can be hacked and turned into a weapon. The angels must fight their way through gunfire, hand to hand combat, and rock crushers, in order to ensure that the device doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. However, with this generation’s Charlie’s Angels movie, the intrigue that comes with said concept, doesn’t match the mediocre final product that is released in theaters.
To compare this Charlie’s Angels to something similar, why not go with McG’s version of the three female spies released back in 2000. If one must be honest, that version isn’t too bad. Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, and Lucy Liu all commit and add a fierce “girl power” vibe to the movie, which goes hand and hand with an eccentric and unrealistic story. It’s fun! Now, one can always go for some harmless entertainment. Where the new Charlie’s Angels falls apart is the story. The story is so messy and convoluted with other unnecessary elements, you get a headache from the constant eye-rolling. The lack of interesting dialogue and flow, muddle the goal of giving the audience an entertaining, women empowerment, kick-ass story of a good time. Charlie’s Angels contradicts itself by coming up with exciting moments, and shortly turns those moments into something that was never needed there to begin with. There’s a part in the film where the Angels have to decide who is good and who is bad. But in an effort to create drama, we’re left with nothing but plot hole after plot hole. There’s no excuse for the amount of filler scenes, used to “further” the plot, but in the end, end up being nonessential.
There’s no helping Charlie’s Angels if it remains the jumbled mess it is. However, the performances are decent and the action is appealing. Kristen Stewart, who plays the sporty/angsty rich girl turned rebel, is basically herself with the constant movement and mumbled speech, but it fits here. Her character isn’t so much brooding, but rather fails to care as much as rest of the women. Stewart, who plays Sabina is teamed up with Jane for the mission, played by Ella Balinska. Jane is the more reserved one, as she was introduced to the Angels after her run as a former Mi:6 agent. Then comes in the whistleblower, Elena (played by Naomi Scott) who’s comedic timing is well worth the time spent watching the dull story. Scott has considerable talent, and tends to be a “saving grace” amongst the rather mediocre films she’s in. And it’s, sadly, no different with Charlie’s Angels. The problem is, the performances as a whole aren’t bad, and the action is good. But the story is just so jumbled, everything entertaining gets flushed away.
I understand what Charlie’s Angels wants to produce. They want a fearless-females type of film, set in a world where so many females are mistreated. I get it. I’ve been there. But to be honest, the message is so heavy handed, that it loses its punch. Wonder Woman does it better. Furiosa, in Mad Max: Fury Road, does it better. Hell, Captain Marvel does it better. There are so many more films that show women in empowering roles without having to go into the stock footage room to get that point across. The first round of Charlie’s Angels in 2000, was fun. This time around, it’s just a huge, unnecessary, mess.
Directed by: Elizabeth Banks
Starring: Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott, Ella Balinska, Elizabeth Banks, and Patrick Stewart