THE ANGEL by Walter & Robert L. Munger Bloch


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A momentarily likable, ultimately abominable amalgam of Here Comes Mr. Jordan, inside-Hollywood trash, and a Born-Again revival meeting. Mr. Jordan (Claude Rains), as you may recall, was the wisest of those 1940s guardian angels who befriended skeptical tough guys like Edward G. Robinson with miracles and spiritual guidance. And, even with Mr. Jordan here turned into a guitar-strumming pretty-boy named Michael Messenger, some of that naive charm works at the start, as Michael enters the sleazy, empty life of has-been movie producer Harry Vine. Harry's a nasty mess--blackballed by the vicious Studio Head, borrowing from loansharks--but things pick up when Michael moves in, takes him to prayer meetings, flashes a few miracles (the loaves-and-fishes bit works on cold cuts!), and quietly points out the Error of his Ways. Though doubting (""Miracle, shmiracle""), Harry falls for reformed sinner Anna (""I only hitch when the Holy Spirit says it's all right"") and learns to become less of a lech and creep. But, when Harry greedily slips back to his venal ways, Michael brings out the big Retribution guns: a deus ex machina accident kills Harry's porno-flick actor buddy while in The Cinematic Act; bankrupt Harry's chased by the loansharks, he crashes his car, sinks into a coma, but emerges long enough to See the Light before going to meet the Lord with ""light and glory and the singing of a billion trillion voices."" Something for everyone? More like something to offend everyone, with religion taken for another commercial ride, sex thrown in to make up for the lack of demons, the total effect about as spiritual as a plexiglass Christmas tree. The Angel is the ""creation of Robert L. Munger, who created the idea for The Omen. . . . Years ago he went through what is now described as the Born Again experience."" Yeah--and his patron saint is The Flying Nun.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Ward Ritchie