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Two wide silver rings containing encrypted information about the identities and locations of everyone on America’s Witness Protection program go missing. Soon, witnesses start dying. The perpetrators could be the Mafia, the Triad, Russian gangsters or any other major and dangerous crim. It’s up to Charlie’s Angels Natalie (Cameron Diaz), Dylan (Drew Barrymore), and Alex (Lucy Liu) to retrieve the rings and save the rest of people on the list. They go undercover and are drawn into a series of electrifying adventures, starting in outer Mongolia and continuing on a ferocious and deadly motocross race, among other things, and come face to face with mysterious fallen angel, Angel (Demi Moore).

Review by Louise Keller:
With its clearly laid out menus packed with special features, plenty of effort has been taken for the DVD to enhance this fantasy trip with the Angels. My favourite feature is The Full Throttle Juke Box which features some of the songs from the film. Each song is prefaced by an introduction by McG and the music supervisor who talk about why the song was selected. We then see the relevant clip. Unique and well done. Have a look at the Surfer Girl sequence, which totally puts into context the relevance of the Beach Boys song for the Diaz/Moore bikini surfing scene.

But first, the film. The Angels are back with a plethora of energy, high kicks, jaw-breaking stunts and all the cheeky charm that made them winners the first time around. Yes, they’re crashing through windows, leaping off tall buildings, surfing, motocrossing, wrestling and doing everything that’s impossible. And all the while we are entertained and bewitched by their ever-changing guises, a dazzling wardrobe, a bevy of wigs, striking make up and ever-so-high stilettos that seem to come out of every encounter intact. At times the film appears to be an excuse for a fashion parade, a play at dress-ups, with amusing disguises as well as stunning fashions that compliment every curve. 

But it doesn’t matter. This is a good-natured romp that is as over the top as the wardrobe, with plenty of laughs, jaw-dropping action sequences and oodles of surprises. Director McG thinks he’s directing a music video – the touch of restraint he showed in the first film has been removed – the result is non-stop music action that makes us feel as though we are in constant motion. There are some funny moments re-establishing the credentials of each Angel, although I think the first film showcased their individual talents better. Here, the girls are often competing in the same scene for our attention, and our eyes rest on effervescent Cameron Diaz who steals scenes left right and centre with her disarming smile, long lithe limbs and mischievous sense of humour. Her lack of vanity propels her comedy talents into every no-fly zone, and she throws herself into the most ridiculous situations with no holds barred, looking equally enticing in an itsy bitzy teeny weeny white bikini as in fishnets and suspenders or a slinky evening dress. Demi Moore gives a physical display of her talents that should not be reckoned with, adding more glamour to the already saturated glamour posse. The Angels have come a long way since their television days, when they were three beautiful, smart girls on a mission for Charlie. Charlie is almost incidental these days, and the girls have evolved into super-heroes with a healthy appetite for fun. It’s zany and full of wow! Charlie’s Angels is super-charged turbo entertainment.

There are two commentaries (one with director McG, the other with the writers) which will give the converted every little piece of incidental information they want. McG speaks at 100 miles per hour, offering trivia and technical snippets; he explains each homage and major edit as it arises (such as how the contortionist in the box seamlessly becomes Lucy Liu as she flicks her hair), but I found the monotone and speed of his delivery rather off-putting. If you turn on the Angel-Vision Trivia Track, little items of trivia will appear on the screen every few seconds. Gems like Cameron Diaz’s arctic costume was inspired by the traditional styles of Lapland and Finland, or the fact that there are 150 Mongolian extras in the scene, and that the mechanical Yak scene was inspired by Urban Cowboy in 1980. And so on… Heaven for trivia lovers in fact. 

Of the features, Rolling with the Punches has the most appeal, showing the girls onset doing the stunts. Because they had already got into condition for the first movie, it was easier this time, we hear. Other featurettes talk about the Pussy Cat Dolls sequence, the motor vehicles used in the film, the production design, the motocross sequence, CGI, costumes (Dream Duds) which is beautifully put together. Cameo-graphy, lists stars who make cameo appearances together with some background information about them.

Published November 20, 2003

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CAST: Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Lucy Liu, Demi Moore, Bernie Mac, Luke Wilson, Matt LeBlanc, John Cleese, Jaclyn Smith


SCRIPT: John August, Cormac Wibberley, Marianne Wibberley (Story by John August)

RUNNING TIME: 106 minutes

PRESENTATION: Widescreen (2.40:1/16:9 enhanced); English (5.1); Polish (5.1)

SPECIAL FEATURES: Audio commentary with ‘telestrator’ on screen comments by director McG; audio commentary by cinematographer Russell Carpenter, editor Wayne Wahrman & story board artists Adolfo Martinez; audio commentary by writers John August, Cormac Wibberley and Marianne Sellek Wibberley; Angel Vision pop up factoid track with trivia and video link-outs; 8 behind the scenes featurettes including a look into the film’s costumes, production design, stunts, cars and more; ‘size isn’t everything’ ; ‘cameo-graphy’ trivia with direct link to their scenes in the film; jukebox with direct links to scenes where song appears; MTV movie awards short film vignette; tv spot; music video; trailer; special hidden features; talent profiles

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Col TriStar Entertainment

DVD RELEASE: November 19, 2003

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