Olympus Has Fallen ***

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What a strange year this has been for movies so far. We get a new entry in the “Die Hard” series and it turns out pretty lame. We get a “Die Hard” clone that takes place in the White House and it pretty much rocks. “Olympus Has Fallen” takes the one man versus many terrorists to a whole new level when the White House is taken over and the president himself is taken hostage. The results are no where near original but for the most part they are tense and exciting.

The film is well directed by veteran action helmer Antoine Fuqua. I thought the attack on Washington looked a little cheesy in the trailers but after seeing it on the big screen I realized just how impressive it is. Once the White House is occupied by foreign invaders it is up to secret service agent Gerard Butler to kick some ass and save the day.

The movie does rely on too much CGI action at times as well as some shaky camera shots, but for the most part is a great collection of shoot outs, stunts and fight sequences. It is also R rated so there is no skimping on some pretty intense violence.

One thing that was very disappointing with the most recent “Die Hard” movie was it’s lack of entertaining villains. Here we get Rick Yune as a ruthless North Korean nationalist bent on helping his country invade the South by forcing the American’s to pull out there forces. He gets plenty of great exchanges with Butler and a showdown at the end that is among one of the best fights i’ve seen in a while.

Like I said it has been a strange year. Not a lot of greatness so far. This movie was not high on my list of must sees due to a fairly standard marketing effort but and the result is one I would have regretted not seeing on the big screen.

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