I just got done watching Charlie’s Angels the 2019 movie that they were hoping to revive the franchise with. It isn’t a reboot it is a continuation of the previous television show and then the series of movies that starred Lucy Liu, Drew Barrymore, and Cameron Diaz. This review will have SPOILERS so if you haven’t seen the movie yet but want to please keep this in mind as you read forward.
I noticed a few things that irritated me. One was the WAY over the top girl power message and the other was the complete erasure of Bill Murray’s Bosley. They took photos that were from the other movies that had him as Bosley and put Sir Patrick Stewart in his place. This actually pissed me off a little bit because I thought Mr. Murray was a great Bosley. Yes, they did end up replacing him later in the other movie series but the fact that they went so far in this one was extreme to me. The girl power message like I mentioned above was way over the top. Charlie’s Angels has ALWAYS been about female empowerment so pushing it so hard as they did in this movie was a step too far. It made it seem like overbearing political hogwash and it actually took some of the already dubious quality away from the film.
I understand why fans of the show and the Lucy, Drew, and Cameron movies got so heated over this one. There is a HUGE lack of character development for both the Angels themselves and the agency. They shove all this information about how the agency has grown to span the world, etc. without really showing much of the history to it. It would have been better had this movie been set during this expansion so that there could be a series of movies or even a television spin off that could have shown different sets of Bosleys and Angels setting up and settling into their new roles in different countries and environments instead of the lack luster way that they showed it. I also hated that instead of finding a new bad guy or staying with the CEO being the baddie they had to go with the traitor within. Of all the movies from the earlier films the one where an ex-Angel was the bad guy was actually the worst one! Having John Bosley be the bad guy just because he was passed over for the Charlie seat was shallow and uninspired. It was also a horrible betrayal of the original television show and the lore setup in it. Bosleys were not supposed to be like that no matter what. Angels could maybe become unstable because of all the crap they go through but Bosleys aren’t as active other than as field support. So the fact that the supposedly original Bosley was portrayed as a bitter old man like this was stupid.
Kristen Stewart got a lot of flak for this movie because people said her acting sucked. Her acting was fine and in fact showed a lot more of her range than her typical roles I have seen. The writing was the issue. Whomever wrote this script had no clue what they really wanted to focus on. The story was all over the place. I saw the same issues in MIB International. A rushed story with no real direction or true character development. They also used the traitor from within trope.
The reason why the Lucy, Drew, and Cameron movies were so popular is because the characters they portrayed had actual lives outside the agency, had a real long term working relationship that was established within the story that was told even back in the first film. Compared to that the new movie was very shallow and completely forgettable.
Now, the movie wasn’t the worst I have ever seen, but, it is the worst of the Charlie’s Angels franchise and it would not surprise me if the franchise is on hiatus again for quite awhile. I think that hollywood has forgotten how to tell a truly meaningful story outside of high drama and political pandering which is just sad.