LONDON HAS FALLEN is SHIT. Not even so bad it’s good shit. Just plain old shit. And nasty shit! Homophobic, xenophobic, racist and dull. This sets back the cause of the action film by decades and just handed the purveyors of political correctness an easy win in their crusade to curtail our expressions of good old fashioned action-adventure fun.
Here’s why this movie is so bad. Nick Clement..give it all you’ve got!
Listen. I am not in the business of writing negative reviews. There are SO many great and underrated films out there that I’d rather spend my time writing about the movies that appeal to me the most, and the ones that I want people to seek out. My time is limited, I’m not paid for my thoughts, I’ve got a day job and a wife and a kid, and because of this, I’m very picky-choosy with what I watch on a daily basis.
So as a result, you won’t find me dishing on every single new release that Hollywood has to offer. But every once in a while I end up seeing a rancid piece of shit and I need to let the sparks fly. Odious to the extreme and made without any sense of intelligence, irony, or distinguishing style outside of remnants of video games and much better films, the action thriller London Has Fallen not only traffics in some of the most obnoxious and xenophobic of stereotypes, but it wastes its R-rating on laughable action scenes that have zero weight, while the entire picture looks to have been crafted on a Playstation 2 console.
Yes, I will admit, there are some cool stunts and some nifty stunt driving maneuvers. But that’s it. The rest of this movie is pitiful, directed without any grace by Babak Najafi, and written by a quartet of writers, all of whom have names that sound like pseudonyms (Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikt, Chad St. John, and Christian Gudegast). Honestly, it sort of resembled Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s Team America: World Police, except, you know, minus the style and brilliance and satire and intelligence.
This is a craven, fear-mongering piece of sub-exploitation bull-dung, a film that presents a world where anyone with a mere tint of brown in their skin is a terrorist, and which mixes self-righteous speechifying — mid fist-fight! — and jingoistic bloodlust to a degree that’s utterly inane at best and potentially disturbing at worst.
Gerard Butler looked either full-blown wasted or incredibly hungover depending on the scene; there’s a distinct puffiness to his physical nature in this film that was disconcerting to witness. He was RIPPED less than a decade ago for 300; here he looks like a doughy replicant of his former self. Morgan Freeman should be ashamed of himself for having to deliver one of the film’s most nonsensical and morally confused sequences, Aaron Eckhart looked actively bored, and everyone else projected a going-through-the-motions vibe which contributed to the all-around glum atmosphere.
The corny bookends with Butler writing his resignation letter are pure cornball nonsense, projecting false modesty while shamelessly courting a third film (I’ve still not seen Olympus Has Fallen, and at this point, I am not sure if I will, despite some people telling me that I should).
And again, about those “special effects” – are you kidding me? There are so many chintzy shots scattered all over this shiny turd that I started to just laugh whenever the next set-piece would arrive. After seeing the truly awe inspiring and breathtaking CGI-effects work done on Sully, I have zero patience for cheap and obvious hackery.
I can’t believe this movie made $200 million worldwide; we’re all but ensured of another follow-up, with post-Cannon Group cinema-cheese purveyors Millennium Films already likely hard at work on a “script.” It pisses me off, because when compared to something like Peter Berg’s underrated actioner The Kingdom, which mixed thoughtful geopolitics with pulse-pounding action, London Has Fallen looks even more dopey and insufferable. Currently streaming on Netflix. You’ve been warned.
ABOUT NICK CLEMENT:
After spending close to a decade working in Hollywood, Nick Clement has taken his passion for film and transitioned into a blogger and amateur reviewer, tackling old, new, and far flung titles without a care for his cerebral cortex. His latest venture: Podcasting Them Softly, finds him tackling new ground as an entertainment guru, and along with his spirited partner Frank Mengarelli, are attracting some diverse and exciting talent to their site.
Some of Nick‘s favorite filmmakers include Michael Mann, Martin Scorsese, Tony Scott, Oliver Stone, David Fincher, Werner Herzog, Terrence Malick, and Billy Wilder, and he’s a huge proponent of the “31 Flavors of Cinema” school of thought. Favorite films include The Tree of Life, Goodfellas, Heat, Back to the Future, Fitzcarraldo, Zoolander, Babe, and Enter the Void.