CHARLIE’S ANGELS 2: FULL THROTTLE isn’t really a narrative film. It isn’t concerned with linear thought or character development or sensible plot workings. This is a film that can be seen from the beginning, but that isn’t required. You could join this in progress at any point, or if on DVD, if you had a random chapter shuffle function, it wouldn’t really matter that much. You could watch chapter 12 before chapter 3 followed by chapter 22 and it would make as much sense as what we are given, BUT… what we are given is a deliciously absurd fetishistic tickling that you are either going to relish in and wallow… OR hate and decree the death of cinema.
Personally, I wallow, I relish, I celebrate. Like the absurdity that was Vin Diesel’s XXX, this outing with the Angels is a deliriously insane handjob of a movie. This isn’t about love, this is about sensations, trivial feelings… It’s about giving you all the necessary visual information to carry into a shower or a Kleenex.
Got a nun fetish, Eskimo, surfing, roller derby, French panties, martini glass bath fetish? How about Dirt Bike women? Got a thing for that underage gal that wore the Beaver costume at the Football games? How about the Olympics? You ever watch the floor exercise with lewd thoughts? Ok, they’ve got ya covered. Car Wash fantasies? Cow Girl bondage dreams? Ok, let’s get darker… How about a woman that can take a beating and dish it out as good as she can take it? I’m serious… that’s here too. I mean, in this film you could beat the living shit out of Drew Barrymore, and there are no ramifications. No bruises, no dislodged teeth… She’s still adorable, still cute, still sexy and her spirit is right there.
McG is a PG-13 Russ Meyer.
You watch CHARLIE’S ANGELS 2: FULL THROTTLE and it plays out like an anorexic outing from the frontal lobe of Meyer.
This film is about a new breed of superwomen emerging out of the political correctness of our times. We are re-introduced to three lithe athletic super-heroines: Natalie, Dylan and Alex, wildly battling the Mongol hordes before the leers, jeers and lecherous come-ons of their drooling all-male audience. The violence, implicit in the girls’ tease, is quickly moved out of the micro-Mongol bar into the outside world as they literally let go of themselves embarking on a wild, violent, deadly journey of vengeance on all evil.
Apologies to Meyer for the above paragraph, but if you know your Russ, you know what I’m aping. McG isn’t attempting to make a film for the serious minds, he’s aiming for the crotch of his audience. Watching the film is akin to having your eyelids held open ala Alex, and being willingly-fed every fetish image your mind could conjure in the time given. There’s even allusions to gang-bangs and cum-baths in this film. I’M NOT JOKING. This film is all about a hanging dripping libido.
The enjoyment of the film is most likely dependent upon whether you willingly accept that or not. Or if the images that McG throws at you give rise to your baser urges… they might not. I mean, for Ebert and Meyer – it was about triple E breasts and a light bulb ball roast, for McG it’s diamond studded bikini in a champagne martini bath. These bodies are more Deco than Amazonian, but the feats are still superhuman. These are powerful female spirit animals that can survive anything that their cruel world throws at them with a gleeful giggle and a sashaying exit.
Now, I know that I said the plot was not there, but technically there is one… one that it really isn’t important for you to care about to enjoy the film. You see, the folks in the witness protection program for having testified against organized crime… their identities are kept very secret, and only through a combination of these two rings worn by two people that are essentially in charge of the Justice Department. These two rings are stolen, and are being auctioned to crime families that are eager to seek vicious retribution against the traitors that have testified against them.
The reason we should care about this, beyond just empathy for the potential victims is that Drew Barrymore’s Dylan is in fact a part of this program. You see, before entering the witness protection program, she was known as HELEN ZASS, the most unfortunate name since a certain friend of mine’s, and of course there is a teasing scene regarding the name that is… well fun. You see, she saw her first boyfriend kill a man, she testified, he was the son of the big Irish Mob here in the U.S. Went into hiding and the F.B.I. hooked her up with Charlie… Ahhh, origin story.
We also meet Madison Lee (Demi Moore), an ex-Angel, and because we’ve seen the trailers we know she’s the bad girl. I think she’s evil because she’s got a full womanly figure, but I can’t prove that… Actually, she’s not bad, she’s just drawn that way. Heh. She’s essentially here to provide the “Bad Girl” Viagra… she’s here so we can see Hot Women beating the shit out of each other.
The men in the series are essentially a ton of willingly klutzy men. Justin Theroux’s evil Irish Seamus O’Grady is essentially the equivalent of Dennis Busch’s The Vegetable from FASTER PUSSYCAT! KILL! KILL! He’s just a big unstoppable hunk of sculpted man-flesh for a superwoman to beat like a flank steak.
Crispin Glover is here and they do something with his character near the end that I still HATE that they did. HOPEFULLY, they’ll figure out a way to fix it for the next film. And I hope there will be a next one.
You see, I love both CHARLIE’S ANGELS movies. The first film is better in terms of story telling and character development (so if you thought it didn’t have any, then expect oblivion this time), but in terms of titillation, a stunning display of Cameron Diaz’s Magical Swirling Ass – which they, thankfully, give a co-starring role in the film this time, as opposed to the supporting-role in the last film. I admit it, this film turns me on. I’m that critic that has no problem admitting that this movie has 4 women that absolutely do it for me.
I won’t claim this is the greatest story ever told, but dammit it gets me hard, and I know YOU don’t want to know that, but that’s why I love the film. I love it because it is a fetish film. Because it is about joy. Because it has the Spider-Man panties in a guest spot again. Because a film doesn’t have to make sense. Because nonsense is sometimes wonderful. Because I love cartoon logic. Because this movie makes me happy through and through.
I believe Roger Ebert once said something along the lines that you can never convince a man to laugh at what he finds not to be funny, and you can never make a man turned on over that which doesn’t turn him on. So, if this movie doesn’t turn you on and make you laugh, then agreed it really must be a terrible film. Thankfully, it makes me laugh and turns me on, so I don’t have that problem here. For me, the film is bliss.
P.S. - Here is Ebert's exact quote in case you wanted to know:
"There are two things you can't argue in film: comedy and erotica. If something doesn't make you laugh, no one can tell you why it's funny, and likewise, it's hard to argue someone out of an erection."---Roger Ebert