Charlie's Angels ★★★

Was initially rooting for this one, but just like almost every other women-led studio venture made post-2016, it’s loaded with a specific brand of faux-feminism that only applies to conventionally attractive women. These highly commercial movies profit off of a real movement by touting hollow ~Girl Power~ without taking any actual risks or adding anything new/interesting to the conversation. 

The real problem with a 2019 reboot of Charlie’s Angels it that its central tenet, hot babes weaponizing their own looks to gather intelligence, is inherently outdated. A lot of this movie seems inherently outdated. Like including a skinny girl character who constantly cracks jokes about how much she loves eating, ala Jennifer Lawrence in 2014. Did you roll your eyes at that reference? You’d be right to –– it’s outdated! 


That skinny girl character is the one played by my beautiful girlfriend Kristen Stewart, whose immense talent is semi-wasted, but is somehow still the best part of the movie. Every single one of her outfits, along with her blonde highlighted pixie-cut, are so specifically catered to bisexuals to the point that I softly gasped in delight at least five different times.

But therein lies another issue! The script ties the appeal of being a spy into this capitalistic fantasy about being rich enough to have an overabundance of clothing and resources. It tells girls that you should be amazed by and desperately want a closet packed full of designer gowns and accessories. There is so much more to being a woman than just looking good, and writer/director/co-star Elizabeth Banks knows this to be true, but fails to properly convey this idea. 


There are half-baked attempts at subversion, like a love interest (Noah Centineo?!) for the hardhearted Jane (Ella Balinska), and Elena’s (Naomi Scott) occasional pointing out of the systemic sexism that prevents her from being taken seriously in the tech world (her boss jokes that the Calisto console will come in pastel colors for the “ladies,” at which she rolls her eyes). It’s just … not enough.

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