Charlie’s Angels 2011 – Premier
Although I have been a strong supporter and promoter for the 2011 re-imagining of Charlie’s Angels, I will not lie and say that I wasn’t worried that it would turn out to be a stinker. I am happy to say that I was pleasantly surprised that the pacing, action and story was done in a way to keep me interested from beginning to end. This may not be your lillies and big hair Angels of the 70’s but it has the same ingredients that made the original successful.
More than just pretty faces, Charlie’s Angels features the talents of Annie Ilonzeh as Kate (a former corrupt Miami police officer), Rachael Taylor as Abigail (rich girl turned naughty thief), Nadine Velazquez as Gloria (a disgraced Marine Corps Lt.) and Minka Kelly as Eve (a street racer). Ramon Rodriguez plays the computer hacking Bosley and Robert Wagner plays Charlie, or more honestly “the voice of Charlie” providing the Angels with missions, guidance and kudos for a job well done.
We all know the formula and the background being that this is the 3rd foray into this remake but I honestly feel that this time they’ve struck gold.
The Plot: It all begins with Kate (Annie Ilonzeh), Abby (Rachael Taylor) and Gloria (Nadine Velazquez) running a search and rescue operation on a slave trader that had kidnapped a young girl to sell. Kate steers the operation while Abby manages to bug the phone of one of the traders by using a little sex appeal and a slight of hand. Gloria corners a guy on the beach and empties a clip near his face in order to pull the necessary information from him. This quick sequence lets you know that the Angels are a well-oiled machine. It is shot well, the production is clean and it keeps you focused.
Bosley then uses some sort of space-aged tech (on a tablet) to pinpoint which room the girl is being held in (this is where I roll my eyes hard) and Abby + Kate zero in on the locale. The girls use a variety of high roundhouses and chokes to take out the slave traders and rescue the girl before she is taken away. The choreography is fast and believable but seeing 2 tiny girls beat 5 very burly men into unconsciousness took a bit of time to stomach as reality.
The girls return home to celebrate and tell Charlie the good news. Everything is smiles, sexiness and Abby trying to get them out to party (she is a socialite after all… I roll my eyes again). Bosley turns down Abby’s invite and she starts to explain her attraction to a bartender who Kate is skeptical of as a mate for her friend. Gloria wants no part of the partying, claiming to be tired and she walks over to her car, starts it and dies in an explosion. This is where Charlie’s Angels truly starts and when Eve (Minka Kelly) enters the scene as Gloria’s old orphanage sister, the real trio get down for some revenge.
This was an excellent pilot from beginning to end. While the acting was spotty – through Ilonzeh’s obvious nervousness and Taylor’s seeming to “try too hard”, it eventually evens out and the chemistry is better than expected. Though Minka Kelly still felt like an outcast towards the end of the episode, it leaves you wanting to see the girls do more and if I am not the only one feeling this way, we are sure to see some more.
Having seen Bosley played up to be an annoying old man in the former incarnations, having a young normal, good-looking dude play him is a breath of fresh air. Needless to say I have Angels fever and I hope to see more of this sort of writing in the upcoming episodes.