Thursday, 6 October 2011

The fourth Angel

I will conclude with the story of the Fourth Angel which featured Jeremy Irons, but for the morning

The unexpectedness challenge, interest and satisfaction with films tends to be greater when there is no expectation. The film grips you emotionally in the kind of way you wish you had not commenced to view At home you can switch off which I was tempted and which once the film ends and the cool head prevails and the film flaw prevail you wish you had. Jeremy Irons play the European Editor of the Economist weekly which enables him to travel extensively and regularly to Europe which for some reason includes India! He cancels the arranged family because of a sudden assignment which involves a few days working after which he will take the family on a tour of the sights.

For another unexplained reason they travel on an American airline and the plane develops technical fault and is diverted to Cyprus where it is taken over by alleged terrorists called the August 15th Movement and demand $50 million. The demand is agreed but as the women and children leave the hijackers spot a local assault team. The hijackers believing they have been set up commence to open fire on the fleeing passengers and because of a fuel leak spread which catches fire the plane not only explodes and fleeing passengers are consumed in the flames so that even those shot injured perish including Jeremy’s wife and daughter although he is among the 15 adults who survive together with his son.

Back home he consumed with grief, anger and guilt and spend the greater part of his time trying to find what happened and why. He has amazing connections for an economist does just with the American Embassy but with intelligence. The situation is complicated given an American airline, the involvement of Cyprus and an alleged International Terrorist group and becomes horrendously worse when Jeremy leans that for some unexplained reasons the captured terrorists are released in secret for political reasons.

His USA Embassy contact feeds him information which leads him to a Terrorist centre in London where four men arrive as he is seizing some papers in a central European language and because he is knows guns he is able to shoot his way out of the situation killing three of the four men.

This brings Forrest Whitaker to London as an FBI agent anti terrorist operations with authority which ensure the cooperation from Timothy West who represented the lead British Government Interests accompanied by Police and homeland security interests. He assigns someone to work with Whitaker plus a small team. Whitaker is primarily interested in securing the $50 million which he believes was the prime motive for the operation as their is nothing known about the alleged Terrorist movement and those killed in London were a disconnected group of known assassins and extortionists including of those involved with the hijacking.

It is at this point that a new female interest is introduced who appears to have been a former girlfriend of Jeremy and is a British spook/ or informed civil servant played by Charlotte Rampling who has a boat. He seeks information from her and also mentions that when it is all over he is thinking of buying a boat and going off into the sun with his son.

While the story lacks credibility it is so well acted to that one stays to leans how it will finish well. Our hero learns that another of those involved is coming to London and he is able to trail him (he rides a motorcycle) and follows him from the station to a hotel where the individual throws away a message which leads to a station deposit box holding a large amount of cash. Jeremy then works out an elaborate scheme in which he breaks into the country home of a colleague and friend for a hand gun (the two spend weekends shooting) goes to the theatre where he creates a scene at an interval to be remembered, then goes off an assassinates the villain in a taxi and then returns apologising to the bar lady at the end of show for his earlier behaviour.

Forrest Whittaker has already arranged to interview the surviving passengers and his initial reaction appears to be that he is satisfied with the explanations given by everyone. This is however a cover because he already suspects the CIA agent at the Embassy who had been feeding Jeremy with information of having some complicity and that the hijacking was not political but financial.

He interviews Jeremy again after the second shooting and of course there is the planted theatre alibi and that having gone shooting the weekend there will be residue. When he finds that the reported stolen gun from the breakin at the house of the friend is of the same make as the recovered spent cartridges he is convinced that Jeremy is involved but being set up by the CIA agent whose desk he bugs on a visit.

Jeremy is fed further information about the location of a hijacker in Paris which he visits and is at the point of killing him with a knife when the man’s daughter enters so he holds back and then leaves. The police arrive only a pair and are killed and the man escapes.

Finally Whitaker is able to persuade Jeremy that he is being set up and participates in the next provided lead which involves a shoot out on a train in Europe which leads to the killing of the last two baddies with Whitaker surviving shots wearing appropriate protection. Back in London Jeremy is picked up by Whitakers British Assistant for the CIA baddie who had organised the whole thing and who has secreted himself in the vehicle. Jeremy and the British assistant jump out of the moving vehicle while Jeremy leaves a grenade obtained from the Whitaker which blows up the baddie.

Meanwhile Rampling has found a boat for Jeremy to buy and her, Jeremy, his son and mother/mother in law set off for an enjoyable weekend sailing trip although we have heard before that there was one cabin. But I say the film was well done. The fourth Angel is a biblical reference. The film opened before 9/11 but was held back and eventually issued to DVD in the USA in 2003 and subsequently to channel TV.

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