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Olympus Has Fallen (2013)

R   |    |  Action, Thriller


Olympus Has Fallen (2013) Poster

Disgraced Secret Service agent (and former presidential guard) Mike Banning finds himself trapped inside the White House in the wake of a terrorist attack; using his inside knowledge, Banning works with national security to rescue the President from his kidnappers.

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6.5/10
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  • Aaron Eckhart and Gerard Butler at an event for Olympus Has Fallen (2013)
  • Aaron Eckhart at an event for Olympus Has Fallen (2013)
  • Aaron Eckhart at an event for Olympus Has Fallen (2013)
  • Ashley Judd and Aaron Eckhart in Olympus Has Fallen (2013)
  • Gerard Butler in Olympus Has Fallen (2013)
  • Aaron Eckhart and Gerard Butler in Olympus Has Fallen (2013)

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23 March 2013 | LordJiggy
8
| Enjoyable Action with Character
First, you know this film was pitched as "Die Hard in the White House." Yet, given that limitation, the film manages to avoid a number of pitfalls that have crept into the many lesser imitations of the first (and still best of them) "Die Hard." It's the characters in the film that keep it from being too much of a cartoon. The lead character, played by Butler, has had a fall a grace. In a more clichéd film, he'd be a broken, embittered alcoholic (e.g., Kevin Bacon in "The Following") who happens upon a chance for redemption and salvation. Instead, Butler's Secret Service agent is getting on with his life in a desk job, disappointed, anxious to be of more use, but not a shambling wreck of a human. He is a career professional, and when the events of the story take place, he reacts like a professional. The wisecracks are few (he doesn't "kill n' quip") and understated, which makes them more effective. Other characters have small touches (especially Melissa Leo) that make them distinctive and worth rooting for. A very welcome touch is the way the film-makers foil our expectations...they've seen many of the same movies, and rather than follow the cookie-cutter approach of bad scripts, they twist those situations to make them new and interesting.

The action is well done and exciting. It's not a perfect film, but more than competent, continually engaging, and, in the highest praise I can offer, worth full price.

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