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Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle

Reviewed By Chris Parry
Posted 12/28/03 09:57:45

"If the choice is this movie or a mid-afternoon nap... take the nap."
1 stars (Total Crap)

I'll never understand how a team of hundreds of people, from director to producers to writers to technicians to cast to studio executives to marketing dullards, can look at a film like this and say "yep, this is ready for prime time." If I'd appeared in this film, I would be asking rather strongly that it be recut, that reshoots be done, and that something even vaguely resembling reality be inserted. I'd be begging. And failing any sort of agreement from the producers, I'd be asking that they scratch my scenes. That's how bad this film is. It's bad in every respect. It's obnoxiously bad. It's ridiculous, loud, stupid, pointless, gormless, gravitationally incorrect and, when you get right down to it, not at all sexy. Which means it IS... crap.

The original Charlie's Angels was like an early 80's version of Girl Power. You had the hot broads using their hotness, as well as plenty of neat fighting/technical/military/espionage skills, to get the bad guy and save the world from evil. It wasn't James Bond, it was Jill Bond, without the gadgets and harsh sexual innuendo. To put it short, the original Angels were skilled, exotic, genuine female role models. Kinda.

But the new breed of Angels are dumb, bubbly, stereotypical examples of what the world would be like if shopping at the Gap gave you superpowers.

The story goes that the entire witness protection program database has been inscribed on two titanium rings, which when used together decode themselves to give up the info to whoever has them. Now, even if we lived on StupidAssWorld, this would still be the dumbest, most implausible storyline set up since Juwanna Mann. Rings? What are we doing here, going topical? Who stores a witness protection database on a ring? How the hell is that harder to get to than Norad-like computer security? I mean, come ON!

So the Angels have to go get the stolen rings back, not because innocent people woule die if they fell into the wrong hands, but because one of the Angels is in the program and has a nasty boyfriend in her past who wants to get even with her.

And that's where things gety REALLY stupid.

If I told you that I drove a truck off the side of a dam, then jumped out of the truck as it flew downwards, floating around to the attack helicopter that was on the back of the truck, climbing inside, starting it up and correcting it at the last second of a vertical nosedive, while three people flew into the back seat, you'd start checking me for crack burns. I mean, that's not just unbelievable, it's illogical. It's impossible. It couldn't ever happen. Superman might be able to pull it off, but even he wouldn't try flying a helicopter that is pointing straight down and plummeting down the face of a dam. No helicopter ever made could do this. No jet fighter could do this. It can not be done. It isn't doable.

But yeah, the Angels have apparently had special training or something because they do this in the first few minutes of the film... after the girls have ridden a rodeo bull, dodged bullets, outdrank a Mongolian soldier and dodged both a tank and an RPG.

Are you starting to understand the level of stupidity here yet?

There's nothing the slightest bit beyond titilation and stupidity in thie entire film, and even the titilation is minimal. Just when you think they've thrown all the innuendo, sluttiness and teasing they could into the film without swinging around a pole... they pretend they're strippers and start swinging around a pole.

But it won't get your pole moving, trust me. Cameron Diaz STILL looks like someone smacked her in the face with a shovel, yet she's still being passed off as the sex queen of a new generation. Never before in movie history has an actress made such a name for herself doing nothing more than dancing in tighty whiteys. It's as if every one of Diaz' scenes was composed by the marketing genius who told Jenny McCarthy it would do her career a lot of good to be photographed sitting on the john.

Then there's Drew Barrymore, who is trying so hard to be 'metal' that she actually dresses like the lead singer of AC/DC. Not as part of a disguise, mind you, just because she likes the look. Beret and all.

I mean, is there a woman on the planet who is LESS metal than Drew Barrymore? Martha Stewart might qualify, perhaps Rosie O'Donnell, but the field is a small one. It would have made far more sense to make Barrymore the 'brainy' Angel, but when the poor dear girl is producing the very flick we're talking about, it's unlikely she's going to allow others to hog the sexual spotlight by donning the Velma specs and talking about physics.

And then we have Lucy Liu, who is hotter than Satan's own five-alarm chili, essentially consigned to being 'the one who laughs at Cameron's jokes'. Liu is perhaps the only one in this cast who is anything close to a real person, and though she stays clothed for the vast majority of the film, she's the only one worth watching, even if you're of the 14-year-old-boy mindset.

So why is it that the hottest of these three women shows absolutely no skin while Cameron Diaz and Drew Barrymore show nothing but for the entire film? Because she's got a brain in her head and an agent who isn't retarded, I expect. Something Demi Moore clearly can't boast, judging by her 'big screen comeback' as the ex-Angel bad girl who seems to have no clothing but for the occasional bikini.

Seriously Demi, this is the best you can do for a comeback? At least Ally Sheedy won some awards when she clawed her way back from the brink of Forgotten Land - all you're going to win here is the Maxim 'most separated breast implants' award.

And let's not even discuss John Cleese, dragged up from the depths of comedy genius to do nothing more than blink in shock for three scenes. I mean, Cleese is barely given a single line in this film - talk about a waste of talent!

So there you have it. Stupid stunts that defy any sort of rational belief, wasted casting that manages to infuriate and annoy, and more skin than any woman with a brain in her head, an agent in her pocket and a reputation as an actress should have to display on screen.

Objectification does not equal strength, a lesson that precious few female role models today seem to understand in their rush for riches and 'number one' status. You don't see J-Lo telling her screaming legion "don't dress like me because I dress pretty slutty", nor do you see Christina Aguillera displaying her 'strength' when she sings to you that her poo-nanny is dripping for action. As Britney keeps asking the world "why can Christina be a slut and I can't?" and Pink and L'il Kim and Missy Elliot change their look every season to coincide with the release of their new line of 'streetware', it's probably no surprise that Barrymore and Diaz think they have to go all gyno to keep audiences interested. It's just a shame, that's all.

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