Safe House Movie Review
admovieso | March 1, 2012 | No comments
Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds star in upcoming movie Safe House. This action film, directed by Daniel Espinosa, is another “bad guy” movie for Washington, winner of two Oscars. The new movie release is a combination of political action and thriller film.
Washington is Tobin Frost, a one-time CIA agent who’s gone bad and turns himself in at the American Consulate in Capetown so as not to get killed by some meanies with lots of guns. Reynolds plays Matt Weston, a mild-mannered and inexperienced fellow who’s taking care of the CIA’s safe house in the city. He’s supposed to be keeping Frost safe but finds it a difficult task after the bad guys blast into the safe house, kill everyone but Frost and Weston, who are then forced to run. All the while, Frost remains in handcuffs. Although new movie Safe House is really just a trumped up excuse for a lot of chase scenes, due to its very marketable cast and action, it should do well at the box office.
Poor CIA agent, Matt Weston is bored. There hasn’t been much going on at the safe house. He’s been practicing his French and waiting for a phone call. He’s been keeping house at the Capetown, South Africa safe house for a year and Weston is really looking for something to do and a chance to prove himself to his superiors, particularly David Barlow (played by Brendan Gleason.) It’s just a coincidence that on the same day Weston has been begging for a promotion, that Tobin Frost, a big enemy to all intelligence agencies, shows up on his doorstep for interrogation and a little waterboarding by one of the CIAs special teams. Weston watches all of this through security glass.
Not much is gotten out of Frost before the safe house is blown up, leaving only Weston and Frost alive. They begin their escape through Capetown while being followed by the bad guys who are after Frost. Weston thinks that Frost might also be a bad guy, but not for the reasons that Weston’s superiors think he is. In the meantime, Sam Shepard and Catherine Linklater, playing CIA heavies, are planning on dissolving the mission gone wrong.
The plot of movie picture Safe House is not particularly original. It feels like a mashup of ten other spy films. Espinosa, however, has done a great job of adding some exciting twists and techniques. The action is thrilling, and the documentary style of filmmaking really adds to the film. Reynolds is the film’s leading man but director Espinosa and David Guggenheim, the screenwriter, really let him get his hands dirty. Viewers will be aware that a lot of the bad stuff is going to fall on Weston and Reynolds does an excellent job of making the audience care about what befalls him. He’s slick at engaging the audience.
It would be okay if the film was about ten minutes shorter and some of the CIA debriefings seem pretty improbably. The information given to us about both Weston and Frost doesn’t seem to mean much to audiences. These are little things but they’re what keep Safe House from being excellent rather than just a good night out.
But no matter what, Espinosa and the cast have given us an exciting and gritty film with some amazing action sequences, super chase scenes, and hand to hand combat in some thrilling locations. Safe House is very entertaining and will offer something else for audiences who are tired of the same old romances and movies playing now - leftovers from Valentine’s Day.