Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle (2003)
Main cast: Cameron Diaz (Natalie), Drew Barrymore (Dylan), Lucy Liu (Alex), Bernie Mac (Jimmy Bosley), Crispin Glover (Thin Man), Justin Theroux (Seamus O'Grady), Robert Patrick (Ray Carter), Demi Moore (Madison Lee), Matt LeBlanc (Jason), Luke Wilson (Pete), and John Cleese (Mr Munday)
Director: McG


It is hard not to be taken in by a movie that's so upfront about its existence being compelled solely by Hollywood's endless greed. Money is why everybody is in this movie - except for Demi Moore, for whom it's probably either starring in this movie or taking up a hosting gig on a daytime show catering to home videos of stupid babies getting smacked in the face by their "funny" parents. There is no plot, nothing, just three pretty bimbo kicking ass in their airheaded typical sass.

Well, the plot - or if one can call it that - is that the FBI is stupid enough to store the data of people under their Witness Protection Program in two cheap-looking silvery rings that look as if they came out of come Indian metalwork reject scrap. These rings are held by two people. One is by FBI VIP Ray Carter and the other by some guy with bad Ewok facial hair looking just like Bruce Willis (and he is). While Demi shoots Bruce to death - a pleasure, I'm sure - our Angels try to free Ray Carter from a scary-ass Mongolian camp where they think nothing of Natalie coming in like some Swiss maid porn star to straddle the mechanical yak. Then it turns out that Dylan is under the WPP herself. The villainess of the show is a former Angel, Madison Lee, who brings on the lesbian hoyay with Natalie as if hoyay is running out of fashion.

While Barrymore is still failing miserably in trying to pass Dylan off as some tough rocker chick - oh please - Diaz and Liu are in their elements as Natalie acts like some silly dim-witted ditz and Alex acts like the dominatrix Asian lady archetype. There's a really memorable scene in some biker bar where our Angels play the dancers. Let's just say when Alex cracks that whip and Natalie squirts water from a balloon all over herself and at the horny audience, the PG-13 rating this movie comes with suddenly seems very inadequate.

The prime fun of this movie comes from the visual feast the movie offers in delectable relentless urgency. From amusing little things (like how the Angels, even when shot, find the time to pose oh-so-adorably on the grass) to fun big things (in a really implausible but enjoyable motor rink chase scene, I especially enjoy how the Angels morph into really obvious male stunt doubles during the more dangerous scenes), this movie has me in stitches. I also have fun with the cameos (Carrie Fisher as a Mother Superior, Crispin Glover as the inexplicable Thin Man, the Olsen twins as future potential Angels). Bernie Mac's Bosley is way funnier than Bill Murray's. In case you're wondering, this Bosley is that Bosley's brother. After listening to him talk about Black Irish starting McRib's in a hilarious scene, I stop wondering about this bewildering family tie. There are also very effective parodies, especially the CSI parody scene that is just perfect.

Criticizing this movie for its lack of coherent plot will be like criticizing a Pauly Shore movie for not having any depths. But Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle does the shallow with style, parading a feast of young taut bodies male and female to the audience, tantalizing them and begging them to enjoy the movie just as it is: a shameless piece of visual soft-porn. Fans of nubile babes bitchsmacking each other will particularly enjoy this one. For me, this movie functions superbly as what it sets out to be and nothing more: a really fun and enjoyable piece of fluff. Serious-minded critics can bemoan the death of sober cinema as much as they want, but if only more "just in it for the money" fluff pieces are like this one, things may not be so bad after all.

Rating: 88


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