Thursday, 9 February 2012

Safe House (2012)

This brief exchange between Ryan Reynolds and the delectable but wasted Nora Arnezeder remains the most interestin bit from the whole film.
At a glance:
You saw the trailer and thought this was Training Day (2001) in a room, except with Denzel Washington standin over Ryan Reynolds instead of Ethan Hawke. You expected menacin charm from Denzel and you wanted boyish nervousness from Ryan, punctuated by high speed car chases and some government suits with fancy secret agent talk and cool weapons.
Bad news on the doorstep:
Barely two elements of originality to rub together (so that's probably why Ryan Reynolds and Nora Arnezeder had to rub on each other), in yet another overeager action-thriller retread. Not a surprise considerin it's written by a former US Weekly editor who obviously watches too many movies. David Guggenheim apparently managed to quit his job after successfully pitchin Safe House to Universal, says the official website. Let's hope for better stuff in his already sold projects - 364, Stolen, Narco Sub and Puzzle Palace. Meanwhile, two wasted token performances are turned in by the milfy Vera Farmiga (Up In The Air, 2009) and the adorable Nora Arnezeder (Paris 36 @ Faubourg 36, 2008). The story? Oh I don't know, it might as well have been The Viral Factor (2012) for all I care. Denzel and Ryan might have kicked, jumped and drove one another across Langa (Cape Town's oldest township) but they carried and limped with this movie to the finish line. Simply too frenzied and ultimately shortchanged us for investin in their characters.
Perennial wonderment:
"What kind of villain goes with the name Tobin Frost?"
[Spoiler ahead] Nobody dies like Denzel. He's got the best die in the business! All that mucous and choke. When it's our time, we should all go out like Denzel in the movies - bloodsoaked with grime (cigarette optional) and coughin over some badass line about somethin terribly inconsequential yet beautiful about life. He's so cool that we forgive him for playin a villain with such a silly name in this movie - Tobin Frost.
Reminds me of:
A thousand other action-thrillers before it.
Amacam joker, berapa bintang lu mau kasi?
Enormous presence from Washington and a more interestin turn from Reynolds for once but that's about it. Okay, some decent brawlin. Otherwise, skip it because the best parts are already in the trailer.★★1/2