Man's Favorite Sports

Charlie's Angels Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu AP/COLUMBIA

This week, CBS News Sunday Morning's John Leonard reviews Sony Pictures' Charlie's Angels and The Legend of Bagger Vance, starring Will Smith and Matt Damon.
I feel bad about Robert Redford's The Legend of Bagger Vance. If I were a better person, I'd probably like it more. But it's sappy. And it's about golf. A touchy-feely, guardian angel, Great Gatsby, Field of Dreams, American mythic movie about big blond WASPs hitting little white balls on a lot of green lawn gets old fast. If you putt it, I won't come. Unless you're Tiger Woods. And frankly, they wouldn't have let Tiger Woods play golf in Savannah, Ga., in 1931.

Matt Damon was a junior champion before he went off to World War I, where he was so traumatized that all he does is play cards, drink booze and disappoint little boys like J. Michael Moncrief. But Savannah in the Depression needs a boost. And Matt's
former sweetheart, Charlize Theron, needs to save her father's fancy resort. And great golfers like Bobby Jones (played by Joel Gretch) and Walter Hagen (played by Bruce McGill) agree to compete for $10,000. So late one cricket-noisy night, Will Smith materializes from the 19th hole in the soft Southern sky, with a carpetbag of Zen Buddhist fortune cookies. After which, birdies and eagles and hokum.

Whereas I feel guilty for liking Charlie's Angels. Of course, it's
dumb. But then the TV series wasn't exactly quantum physics. And who needs writers when you've got jiggle?

The Leonard File
Read past reviews by John Leonard.
The new angels, looking like the old Bond girls, are Cameron Diaz, and Drew Barrymore and Lucy Liu (by far my favorite). They get to dress up, kick butt, and grin and giggle as much as they want to. Bill Murray is their hapless Bosley. Tim Curry, Crispin Glover, Kelly Lynch, and Sam Rockwell are the clients and villains -- never mind which, in the usual kitchen-sink plot with sports cars, motorboats, whirly-birds, satellites, software, boom-boom and cleavage.

For boys, when we were young, Charlie's Angels was all about jiggle. For girls, I am told by a surprising number of grownup feminists, it was all about empowerment. For now, it is all about campy tongue in cheek I miss Kate Jackson, the smart one. But if I started listing all the people and things I miss, you'd switch to golf.


  • CBSNews.com staff CBSNews.com staff

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