Charlie's Angels Reviews: Critics Have A Lukewarm Response To New Reboot

The film itself has received a mixed response, but one thing critics can agree on is its feminist message.

The first reviews of the new Charlie’s Angels reboot are out ahead of its release later this month.

Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott and Ella Balinska play the trio leading the new action film, which was directed by The Hunger Games star Elizabeth Banks, who previously helmed the second Pitch Perfect film.

The new Charlie's Angels trio
The new Charlie's Angels trio
Sony Pictures

So far, the reception to the film in general has been pretty lukewarm, as you’ll see in the excerpts below, although most critics have also praised Charlie’s Angels’ feminist credentials, and lauded Elizabeth Banks for including some more progressive messages in the new reboot...

“What’s striking, and refreshing, about the latest version is that it’s written and directed by a woman, an attempted course correct for a franchise that’s typically been associated with a rather leery male gaze… it’s never taken too seriously, and thus is hard to dislike, a disposable film aware of its own disposability. But there’s enough that proves to be entertaining to make one wish it was just that bit better.”

“The movie is relentless, it’s pulpy and exciting, it’s unabashedly derivative, and at an hour and 58 minutes it’s a little too much of a rousingly of-the-moment feministic but still rather standard-issue thing.”

″[Kristen] Stewart is an odd choice for her role—Sabina, a wise-cracking loose-cannon spy/mercenary who doesn’t take much of anything seriously—but she sells it about three-quarters of the way. Which is pretty much how the film around her fares, too. A part-clever, part-misshapen global caper, Charlie’s Angels—like Stewart—connects a few solid kicks in all its flailing.”

“The movie isn’t shy about making its main point: Men are not inherently more valuable than women — or, as Sabina puts it in her opening line, ‘Women can do anything.’ That kind of on-the-nose dialogue will undoubtedly irritate some viewers, but over time the pic cleverly earns its stripes beat by beat.”

Time Out (2/5)

“The original Charlie’s Angels TV show had sexism baked into its concept: three gorgeous female private investigators, each with her own hair colour… correcting this pitch—whatever that might entail—seems like a fool’s errand, so it’s excruciating to watch Elizabeth Banks, as sharp a comedian as Hollywood has, be that fool.”

“This is Banks’ first time directing an action movie. There’s a heist that runs like whatever clockwork isn’t, and the fight scenes are edited to pieces… On the plus side: I can’t recall the last time a blockbuster movie got so much better in its final act.”

“[Banks] builds the whole project on a scaffolding of sisterhood that feels so natural, it highlights Hollywood’s historic failures in this regard. These women wear what they want, love who they want, find fulfillment in their power, and support each other unconditionally. They’re not undermined by a script that highlights their flaws or insecurities, or a camera that reflexively leers at them.”

“If you’re a fan of having a good time at a movie theater and/or action movies then you do not want to miss these two hours of pure, silly, cinematic joy. Plus it’s one of the best-costumed movies of the year and is full of non-stop outfit inspiration and women looking great whilst beating up bad guys. What more could you want?”

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