Directed by Babak Najafi. Starring Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Angela Bassett, Charlotte Riley, Melissa Leo, Radha Mitchell, Jackie Earle Haley, Shivani Ghai, Colin Salmon, Robert Forster
Running Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
I have to admit, I loved the first one to this; Olympus Has Fallen was just the best amount of thrill and shock to make it an action film that you can watch again and again. And though the trailer seemed intense, London Has Fallen spirals into a horrendously cheap and nonsensical film.
The intensity and ferocity of the attack on the White House in Olympus Has Fallen left my jaw on the floor and me on the edge of my seat. It was a thrill, it was a jolt and director Antoine Fuqua executed it with brilliance. It’s not surprising he didn’t do London and instead they had to find a man whose name sounds like he’d be a terrorist – well at least on most of America’s security lists and according to this film’s own stereotyping – and who has made only one other film (Easy Money: Hard To Kill), which was also a flop. Though, not as bad as London Has Fallen.
The British PM has died of a heart attack all of a sudden a state funeral warrants the world leaders’ presence in London. Very little time to plan security doesn’t have US President Asher (Aaron Ekhart) worried since he’s got the one man killing machine Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) by his side. And this is excuse enough for them to have very little other security measures in place. Though they’re more than the other world leaders get: the Japanese PM is stuck in a traffic jam on a bridge, the French PM is sitting in a boat on the Thames reading, the Italian PM is romancing a young girl on Westminster Abbey and the German Chancellor is among tourists watching the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace in what looks like a fantasy montage out of a politician’s Alice in Wonderland.
While the initial attack has some amount of surprise and thrill, this soon disappears when you realise that the filmmakers have painted out Britain to be a useless nation with a police force that can easily be taken out and replaced by terrorists and a defence machinery that doesn’t do anything to protect the city. They just stand around in MI6’s situation room and watch. All this so that Asher and Banning can go about London killing off terrorists themselves.
While the chemistry between Ekhart and Butler is good, they fail to make anything impactful out of it due to a horrible script and story that forces them into ridiculous situations, which they don’t need to be in.
The action and CGI look amateurish and cheap. It’s like they had very little money and brains to do anything here. Just churn out something, seems to have been the motto. As usual, great actors like Morgan Freeman and Angela Bassett get side lined, doing very little and everything predictable.
London Has Fallen doesn’t even deserve to go straight to DVD. It should just fall into the dustbin of movies that should never have been made.