Long Shot Hopes to Beat the Odds

Two hours of love and politics. I need a drink. Make it a double.

Charlize Theron and  Seth Rogen? It could happen. I mean, they don’t call it movie magic for nothing. Long Shot gives the rom-com its best shot and it’s.. okay.

The movie doesn’t push the boundaries of the genre, and doesn’t push the actors from their comfort zones.

She plays Charlotte Field, the Secretary of State with presidential ambitions. Seth plays Fred, the kid she used to babysit and was crushing on her back then and is now an unemployed journalist. Fate brings them together (with an assist from Boys II Men) and hilarity and love ensues.

Doesn’t Get My Vote

Fred quits his job as an investigative reporter when his paper gets bought out by a company that doesn’t share his world view. Charlotte works for a president that had a TV career and won’t seek re-election so he can pursue movies, and will endorse her. After running into each other at a fundraiser it’s beauty and the beast schlub.

But these roles are pretty much everything we’ve seen Seth and Charlize do. She oozes class and competence. Been there. He’s a passionate underachiever who likes drugs. Done that.

I had really high hopes for this movie. It’s the only comedy coming out this summer that is aimed at adults. There are plenty of throwback songs and 90s references to treat the older audience. But if you’re looking for a rom-com with a retro feel just watch When Harry Met Sally.

Pretty Man

The commercials tout this as another throwback film, Pretty Woman, except that this time Seth is Julia Roberts and Charlize is Richard Gere. That is true to a certain extent. There is the romantic mismatch, well meaning friends who are against the relationship, extraordinary circumstances that cement the bond. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg of predictable plot points.

But where Pretty Woman formed a relatable bond with the audience, Long Shot seems to keep us at arm’s length. Maybe it’s easier to relate to rich businessmen and hookers than journalists and politicians.

Don’t get me wrong, we’re rooting for them to make it work against all odds. But if it doesn’t work out, it’s not going to wreck my cinematic world.

This isn’t a waste of time, but you do not need to see this in theaters. Watching this on a 42″ set at home will be just fine. 

The Critic’s Cocktail Recommendation

Scotch, the classic drink of politicians everywhere. Not the presidential Blue Label good stuff. A bottle that they keep behind the counter at the liquor store will do for this film.


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