Film: Angels Revenge

Angels Revenge is a 1979 movie from Arista Films, directed by Greydon Clark. It is also known as Angels' Brigade and Seven from Heaven.

The movie focuses on seven women who decide to fight the local drug cartel. The brother of Michelle Wilson, a Las Vegas pop singer, is found severely beaten. When taken to the hospital, the young man is found to have been on illegal drugs. The singer meets with April, her brother's teacher, who reveals that she's secretly been gathering intelligence on the cartel's local drug processing plant, and Michelle agrees to help April with a plan to destroy the plant. With Michelle's fame opening the door, they recruit four more women with special skills and connections to help them carry out their audacious goal. As they plan their first strike, they discover high-schooler Trish spying on them. The student gets relegated to phone duty, but eventually worms her way into their escapades. The "Angels" not only destroy the processing plant, but also manage to intercept one of the shipments. As a result, the women receive unwelcome attention from the local drug cartel.

Angels Revenge has major roles for Peter Lawford and Jack Palance as the leaders of a drug cartel, and gives minor roles to famous character actors Jim Backus, Alan Hale, Jr., Pat Buttram and Arthur Godfrey (playing himself). Of the actresses who played the movie's seven female protagonists, however, the closest any had previously come to any degree of fame was Robin Greer, who won prominent roles on Ryan's Hope and Falconcrest. Susan Kiger was the Playboy Playmate of the Month for January 1977, and played singer Michelle Wilson; her co-stars were Sylvia Anderson as stuntwoman Terry Grant, Lieu Chinh as martial arts instructor Keiko Umaro, Jacqueline Cole as high-school teacher April, Noela Velasco as model Maria, and Robin Greer as policewoman Elaine Brenner. Robin's younger sister Liza Greer plays high-school student Trish, who invites herself into the team.

The original version (Brigade) did not have the How We Got Here In Media Res opening. Rather, it started chronologically. The later version (Revenge) added the narration by Cole (who was incidentally Greydon Clark's wife).

For the Mystery Science Theater 3000 version, please go to the episode recap page.

Not to be confused with the cheesy 1980's Angel films, which included similarly titled sequels as Avenging Angel, Angel III: The Final Chapter and Angel 4: Undercover.


The movie provides examples of:

  • Absentee Actor: In a rare instance of this trope appearing in a movie, Neville Brand (who plays Miller) is completely cut out of some versions of the film (including the one used on Mystery Science Theater 3000), despite his name being left in the credits.
  • Absolute Cleavage: Featuring deeply decolletaged skin-tight jumpsuits.
  • Action Girl: Seven of them, to be precise.
  • Adaptation Induced Plothole: The deletion of Neville Brand's character causes a number of plot holes to crop up - namely, why the female officer is part of the group, why the police never appear involved, and what the girls did with all the cocaine they snagged at the beach.note 
  • Amazon Brigade: Well, yes. It's the entire crux of the film.
  • Brick Joke: The guy in the outhouse.
  • Cool Car: The tricked out black SUV including a cannon.
  • Creator Cameo: Writer/director Greydon Clark makes a cameo as the director of Terry's film shoot.
  • Da Chief: Miller, who is Elaine's gruff superior at the police station. He doesn't approve of the Angels' hijinks or Elaine's involvement, but he eventually warms to the idea—when the Angels bring the captured drugs to his office while in their bathing suits.
  • Dead Hat Shot: After the Waterfall Shower scene, the Angels force the mooks who tried to capture them to submerge themselves in the pond. One of the mooks is wearing a cowboy hat that floats on the surface after he goes under.
  • Expospeak: A radio station recaps the events of the previous scenes.
  • Fanservice Extra: For about five seconds in one scene, we see a bikini-clad brunette floating in Burke's pool while eating a lollypop suggestively. And this is in a movie that's already pretty darn high in the fanservice department.
  • Girls with Guns: ...and grenades, and katanas, and brass knuckles, and pepper spray, and weaponized vehicles, and...
  • Groin Attack: Threatened, with a sword, to perp-sweat a drug dealer. "They're revoking his member-ship!"
  • Honest John's Dealership / Sexist Used Car Salesman: Pat Buttram plays a folksy car dealer who sells the women a shoddy van. It's implied that he intended to take them for fools, under the idea that women don't know a bad automobile when they see one... the truth is they knew it was crap, but had a Wrench Wench on the team who intended to fix it.
  • How We Got Here: The film inexplicably starts with the climax, after which one of the Angels explains the setup to the audience in a flashback that lasts for a good half of the movie!
  • Huddle Shot: It's boob-tastic, complete with an "A, B, C" plan culminating in "H, drive the Hell out of there!"
  • Indy Ploy: April's initial plan to destroy the narcotics processing plant, before Elaine got involved, was basically to just wing it and make things up on the fly.
  • In Medias Res: The film's recut with the first half of the raid on the processing plant as an Action Prologue, then showing most of the first few acts as a flashback before returning to the rest of the raid.
  • Interchangeable Asian Cultures: Keiko has a Japanese name and wields a katana, but is introduced as being from Vietnam. Technically it's possible, but given the general intelligence level of this movie as a whole, it's far more likely that They Just Didn't Care. What makes it better is that the actress was neither Japanese NOR Vietnamese - she's Chinese.
  • Jiggle Show: All that's missing is Russ Meyer's name in the credits.
  • Jumped at the Call: Trish, much to the dismay of the other girls who think she's too young.
  • Lock and Load Montage: Used rather stylishly in the sequence (missing from the Mystery Science Theater 3000 cut) where they put the van together.
  • The Magnificent Seven Samurai: A team of seven 'specialists' recruited to take down the drug cartel.
  • Male Gaze: Constantly. For example, early in the movie, we get a shot straight up a ladder as Michelle is climbing it, making her butt the central focus of the frame.
  • Market-Based Title: The movie was originally titled Seven From Heaven, but has also gone by Angels' Brigade and the more well-known Angels Revenge, for whatever reason.
  • Only a Flesh Wound: While she's clearly affected by being shot, Trish is shown caring more about whether her actions earn her a spot among the Angels.
  • Poorly Disguised Pilot: It's fairly obvious, especially with the V-Formation Team Shot and the "7" transition bumper. Someone was trying to get this movie made into a series.
  • Re Cut: The original version lacked the How We Got Here opening.
  • Regional Riff: Keiko is introduced with a stereotypical Chinese musical intro.
  • Right Wing Militia Fanatic: The Angels steal weapons and ammo from a right wing militia in order to wage their war on the drug cartel.
  • Snooping Little Kid: Trish. Lampshaded by her teacher.
  • Spy Catsuit: Worn by the team during the raid on the compound and in the V-Formation Team Shot behind the closing credits.
  • Stock Sound Effects: Oddly, they chose to use cartoony sounds in the fight scenes.
  • The Strategist: Elaine, the policewoman, who irons out the details of the raid on the compound as soon as she arrives.
  • Token Minority: Terry and Keiko.
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: Trish: she gets just a little too excited at Sticks' unwanted bris, she latches onto a drug dealer's car in order to track him, and she fatally shoots Burke at the end. However, the trope is slightly averted when she learns how to shoot a gun: she fires it inelegantly, then runs off crying and embarrassed.
  • Unspoken Plan Guarantee: Averted; the first scene is the Angels reciting a quick summary of their plan to attack the cartel's compound (which Elaine comes up with later in the film[[note]]and earlier in the story), and besides some additional security, it proceeds perfectly.
  • V-Formation Team Shot: In the credits.
  • Waterfall Shower: The Angels enjoy one in the woods after blowing up the drug processing compound.
  • Weaponized Car: Terry made a few modifications, including a cannon and a reinforced bumper making the SUV effectively a battering ram.
  • Wrench Wench: Terry