WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Angel Has Fallen, in theaters now.
Angel Has Fallen follows in the footsteps of countless action films and television dramas when it comes to the United States' war on terrorism. Similar to the multitude of Jack Ryan movies, not to mention shows like 24 and Homeland, the story focuses on domestic threats deceiving the White House into attacking another world power.
However, as cliched and predictable as Gerard Butler's third outing as Secret Service Agent Mike Banning gets, Angel Has Fallen falls into the worst trap of all: unforgivable plot holes that threaten to blow the entire script to smithereens.
Mike starts off the movie reminiscing about old times with his war buddy from Iraq, Wade (Danny Huston), who's begging him for private contracts for his firm, Salient, should Mike accept the job of director of the Secret Service. It's Wade who later frames Mike for attempting to assassinate President Trumbull (Morgan Freeman), because Vice President Kirby (Tim Blake Nelson) promised Salient an enormous contract once he takes office.
On the run, Mike seeks out his estranged father, Clay (Nick Nolte), in the West Virginia woods. Clay is a Vietnam vet who lives off the grid, and Wade has no idea who Clay is, because Mike never mentioned the father who walked out on him. Yet conveniently, Salient's tech team pulls up data tracking Clay for Wade's men to pursue. It makes no sense they'd know about Clay when Wade, Mike's best friend, admits he didn't know about the father.
THE CABIN RAID
Clay's cabin has no electricity, and the surrounding forest is booby trapped to ensure trespassers meet a fiery end. The Salient mercenaries don't know this, however, and nonchalantly attempt a raid, only for them to all be burned to a crisp. Shockingly, Wade doesn't send a cleanup crew to the location, which leaves dead people for the FBI to track. Mike even leaves a message, directing them to Salient, which unravels Wade's plan.
It's pretty stupid on Salient's part, made all the more worse by Wade not even having teams covertly located around the cabin. When Mike and his father leave a couple hours later, there's no one to intercept them, making Wade's company terrible when it comes to strategy.
THE HOSPITAL ASSAULT
One has to think when a U.S. president is nearly killed in a drone attack, security around his hospital would be airtight. Not in this movie, though. The public is free to come and go, and this hospital, for whatever reason, has the smallest security detail ever. Wade's team of fewer than 10 men takes out skilled Secret Service agents.
The Secret Service agents can't even recognize Mike in disguise as he infiltrates the hospital, so it's no surprise they're this incompetent. It's laughable to see Salient flying helicopters in so Wade can escape. Apparently, the U.S. military didn't see it fit to also lock down the airspace, once more creating a convenient path for Wade's men to attack and then try to escape. The Secret Service is quickly taken apart, and clearly, without Mike, there is no contingency measure in place, or any sort of defense. It's such an oversight, done just to allow a firefight at the end with Mike and Wade's crew.
Now in theaters, Angel Has Fallen stars Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman, Jada Pinkett Smith, Lance Reddick, Tim Blake Nelson and Piper Perabo, with Nick Nolte and Danny Huston.