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Olympus Has Fallen

Olympus Has Fallen

Starring: Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman, Aaron Eckhart, Melissa Leo, Angela Bassett, Ashley Judd (Rated M – 121 mins).

Dread from the inside is on the agenda for US President Asher (Aaron Eckhart) in ‘Olympus Has Fallen’ – this thrill ride of a film that might as well be called Die Hard at the White House. Due to a freak accident, respected secret service agent Mike Banning (a taylor-made role for Gerard Butler) is reassigned to the treasury department. Going about his mundane daily routines with much less responsibility, catching up with his former partners or having coffee with pretty secretaries, a problem occurs mid-air with two fighter jets taken out. Coincidently at the same time, North Korean delegates are preparing for a meeting with the President in the oval office. Teams begin to scramble in the sky.

While slightly unorthodox, a heroic Mike Banning begins a one man war stepping into action for a succession of fist fights and gun battles to save his old boss. Using survival instincts, Mike manages to outwit the kidnappers amid big explosions through a series of secret passageways. He also gains the trust of the President’s son keeping the patriotic flag waving in the family. Fast moving suspense without much logic, but extremely good fun.

A top notch cast includes the brilliant Melissa Leo and Morgan Freeman (who in-fact also appear in the commendable Oblivion). Australian Radha Mitchell (Melinda & Melinda) and the American Ninja himself, Michael Dudikoff are also part of the proceedings. An assault begins to unfold at ground level in the white house under the noses of operatives. A hostage situation occurs with President Asher rolling over to the demands of an, at this point unseen, lethal enigma.

There are few surprises in the script, however, it’s all about the breathless unfolding of events. As mentioned at the start of this review, similarities to Die Hard are relevant. That’s all part of the enjoyment of this entertaining nonsense.

© Shane A. Bassett

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