“Charlie’s Angels” (Columbia)
By Catholic News Service
This third film iteration of the iconic 1976-81 television series turns out to be, overall, a charmer, an old-fashioned popcorn movie overstuffed with preposterous action sequences, exotic locales and good humor.
A secret organization recruits women from around the world to serve as spies, or “Angels.” When the outfit’s leader (Patrick Stewart) retires, he is succeeded by a former agent (Elizabeth Banks, who also directed and wrote the screenplay). Two of her operatives (Kristen Stewart and Ella Balinska) join forces with in an engineer (Naomi Scott) whose invention, a sustainable energy source, has been stolen by her wicked bosses (Nat Faxon and Sam Claflin) who plan to weaponize it. A globetrotting game of cat and mouse ensues, with enough twists and double-crosses to keep viewers guessing until the very end (though the message of female empowerment and equality is a bit heavy-handed).
One of the Angels is coy about her sexual preference. While the matter is dealt with obliquely, at least some grown viewers may want to steer clear.
Frequent but bloodless action sequences, some sexual innuendo and fleeting references to homosexuality, occasional profane and crude language, an obscene gesture. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.