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Charlie's Angels

"Charlie's Angels" on DVD

An Empty Roller Coaster

The movie version of the 1970's TV show's main saving grace is that it doesn't take itself seriously. Otherwise, what's basically 100 minutes or so of empty thrills would have little to recommend it. As it is, it's a lighthearted romp that offers stunts, fights, and explosions galore and any lack of a credible script is almost "overlookable."

The film opens on a promising note, inside an airplane where they're about to screen (as the in flight movie) "T.J. Hooker, the movie." This prompts one of the characters to remark on yet another TV show movie spinoff. A few seconds later we're into BIG STUNT territory, so the tone is definitely and early set.

Drew Barrymore (who also produced the film), Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu are the Angels, a trio of high tech private investigators working for "the voice of John Forsythe." Each has her own life outside of being an Angel, and these brings some interesting human and comedic moments (especially for Diaz).

Bill Murray takes over David Doyle's role as the sidekick Bosley. He's kind of a cross between assistant, mentor, confidante, and mother hen, and he plays the part to a T.

The case involves a high tech genius with a microchip on his shoulder, forcing the Angels into a reasonably twisty plot that sees each of them, and those closest to them, targeted for certain death.

The women play their parts winking at the audience all the way through and there's almost enough action to keep your attention. It all starts to get a tad strained by the second half, however, so the fact that the movie only runs 99 minutes is a bonus.

Still, it's a popcorn movie at heart and if you take it as such you can have an enjoyable time in the home theater.

The DVD is is widescreen, 16x9 compatible, with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, and the digitally mastered quality of the disc is excellent. Extras include a commentary track by the director and cinematographer, some entries on the film's designs, fashions, stunts, effects, etc., and some deleted and/or extended scenes. There are also outtakes and bloopers, music videos, talent files, trailers, production notes etc.

In all, a pretty complete package for a pretty lightweight movie.

Charlie's Angels, from Columbia Tristar Home Video
99 min. widescreen (2.35:1) 16x9 compatible, Dolby Digital 5.1
Starring Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Lucy Liu, Bill Murray, Sam Rockwell, Tim Curry, Kelly Lyncy
Produced by Leonard Goldberg, Drew Barrymore and Nancy Juvonen
Written by Ryan Rowe & Ed Solomon and John August, Directed by McG.


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Updated May 13, 2006