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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Review: ‘London Has Fallen’ is too predictable and cliché

    Millenium Films
    Theatrical poster for “London Has Fallen.”

    There’s a reason why action sequels fail to live up to the expectations imposed on them by their audiences. Whether that reason comes from making a pointless sequel that relies heavily on preceding films or the fact that their plots tend to expand on the topic of xenophobia, action sequels usually turn out to be failed experiments with nothing to offer.

    “London Has Fallen” is no more than an average movie with its heavy reliance on clichés and predictability. It fails to provide an interesting plot.

    The film begins with an arms dealer and wanted terrorist Aamir Barkawi (Alon Aboutboul), who is apparently responsible for many terrorist attacks throughout the Middle East. After the U.S. locates him at a wedding in Punjab, Pakistan, it sends a drone in hopes of killing Aamir. The drone ends up killing Aamir’s daughter, which ultimately motivates him to seek revenge against the U.S.

    The film jumps ahead two years after the attack. Benjamin Asher (Aaron Eckhart) is still president of the United States. Alongside him is his security guard and fearless warrior, Mike Banning (Gerard Butler).

    After the mysterious death of the British prime minister, Asher decides to attend the funeral, despite the objections of Secret Service Director Lynne Jacobs (Angela Bassett).

    From here on, the film embarks on a journey in which the use of clichés make up the bulk of the film and predictability becomes more and more blatant.

    London turns into a hellhole for the political leaders who decided to attend the funeral. The coordinated attacks begin with bombs, rocket launchers and fake cops who initiate a massacre on the civilians walking down the street.

    Unlike the first film, in which he became a hostage after the initial attack on the White House, Asher manages to avoid capture for the majority of this film and spends most of his time fighting alongside Banning.

    At this point, one has to question the quality and purpose of this action sequel. Other than showing a ruthless terrorist who was motivated by pure revenge instead of personal gratification, the film does nothing to separate itself from its preceding film. Not only does the movie reiterate “Olympus has Fallen” by displaying a full-scale assault in the goriest and loudest manner possible, but it also follows in its exact footsteps by making the U.S. president a prime target.

    The one thing that keeps this film afloat is Banning himself. After Asher is captured by Aamir’s son Kamran Barkawi (Waleed Zuaiter) and his men, Banning enlists the help of fellow soldiers to help save his president. Like the first film, Banning comes off as a ruthless and terrifying character that stops at nothing to save his people.

    In a way, Banning is a Liam Neeson-type character. The only difference is that Banning holds a responsibility to his country and represents the ideal of an American patriot. The way Banning dispatches his enemies is brutal, but entertaining. It’s one of the few things likely to keep viewers invested in the film.

    “London Has Fallen” does not live up to the standards of a good action sequel. Overshadowed by clichés and predictability, the film becomes a product of its own failure. At the very least, it’s entertaining.

    C –

    Follow Ernesto Fierro on Twitter.

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