First Hit: Despite big holes in the plot and feasibility, it was entertaining enough.
It is hard for me to believe that a big, prop driven, slow plane such as the one that riddles Washington DC with Gatling gun bullets, could and would get as far as it did.
If our defense system consists of two jets (with follow-up planes as well) and they cannot figure out how to shoot down this big slow plane at the outset then… oh we wouldn’t have had a film. Anyway, the timeliness of this film about a North Korean dissident Kang (Rick Yune) trying to teach the US a lesson about the Korean Peninsula made me smile just a little.
The film sets the audience up by showing the close relationship between Mike Banning (Gerard Butler), President Asher (Aaron Eckhart), and his family (wife Margaret – Ashley Judd and son Connor – Finley Jacobsen). Through no fault of his own Mike gets excused from the protecting the President by protecting the President.
When the Korean’s storm the White House, Mike gets back into action and does what he can to save the President, his country, and to save his own life. Another hole in the story is that when the President is shot, and everyone knows there are no more bad guys, no-one rushes into the White House to assist the wounded President – they waited until Mike and Asher slowly made their way out of the rubble – all for drama.
Butler is OK at portraying the troubled agent – but it wasn’t a stretch at all. Eckhart was OK as the President doing the Presidential and honorable acts by letting his Secretary of Defense give up her code to keep her alive. Judd was fine in her small role. Yune is good as the dissident. Morgan Freeman was very good as Speaker Trumbull who ends up being the President in Charge. Angela Bassett as Secret Service Director Lynn Jacobs was good. Creighton Rothenberger and Katrin Benedikt wrote a script that had an interesting concept but too filled with holes. Antoine Fuqua directed this with the idea of fantasy not reality.
Overall: It might be something to watch on a rainy Sunday afternoon at home, but not worth the money to see in the theaters.