This week starts off with an unlikely romance in Long Shot. Fred Flarsky (Seth Rogen) is an edgy journalist with a penchant for trouble. Charlotte Field (Charlize Theron) is the Secretary of State and one of the most influential women in the world. Charlotte used to babysit Fred when they were younger but now they find themselves working together when Charlotte hires Fred as a speechwriter and their unexpected chemistry takes them both by surprise as they start a whirlwind and covert romance.
Long Shot is not the Hollywood romantic comedy you would usually expect. But someone there is actually great chemistry between Theron and Rogen. The set up of having them kindle this relationship to the backdrop of the US Government operations is unique and leads to some funny and creative situations. But it really comes down to the two main characters and it would not have worked at all if the chemistry wasn’t there. Long Shot is funny, charming, and interesting and well worth the time.
Next up is director Brian De Palma’s first film in seven years, Domino. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau stars as Christian, a detective in Copenhagen whose partner is murdered by an ISIS member. Against his superiors wishes Christian sets out with a fellow officer to find the killer but they find themselves embroiled in a cat and mouse chase involving a duplicitous CIA agent (Guy Pearce).
Domino starts off as a typical direct to video crime thriller but soon enough you start to take notice of De Palma’s trademark camera shots, editing style and twisted storytelling. Coster-Waldau is a solid lead here and it is nice seeing him take that lead now that Game of Thrones has ended. The story is interesting, the action fast paced, and the acting solid across the board. But the real reason to check out Domino are those trademark De Palma-isms. It has been a long time between his films and it is refreshing to see him back and still expressing his unique vision.
Lastly this week is another thriller, The Intruder. Scott and Annie Howard (Michael Ealy and Meagan Good) have just bought a new house in Napa Valley from Charlie Peck (Dennis Quaid), a kind man who lost his wife to cancer and is planning on moving to Florida with his daughter. But as the Howards settle into their home, Charlie doesn’t seem to be going away, constantly showing up unannounced to mow the lawn or install a security system. When their friends suspect Charlie may be dangerous, the Howards are doubtful until they start to uncover secrets about Charlie’s past that may put them in imminent danger.
The Intruder follows many of the standard stalker tropes we are all familiar with but is elevated a bit and taken into more of an old fashioned exploitation direction thanks to Dennis Quaid’s over the top performance. Quaid can be a thoroughly convincing actor but when he wants to lay it on heavy, he really excels. Ealy and Good are excellent as the unsuspecting couple and have great chemistry with the whole movie taking on an early 90s thriller vibe reminiscent of films like Pacific Heights and Single White Female. All in all this is a fun throwback thriller for a good popcorn movie night with friends.
Also of note this week is the new animated family film Uglydolls, a new 4K edition of the classic Edward Zwick war film Glory with Denzel Washington and Matthew Broderick, and the third season of the Kristen Bell/Ted Danson series The Good Place.
Until next week movie lovers!
DVD and Blu-ray Releases for Tuesday July 30, 2019
BoJack Horseman: Seasons One & Two
Chain of Death
Fragment of an Empire (1929)*
Glory 30th Anniversary 4K
Humanoids from the Deep (1980) Steelbook*
Love Ranch (2010)*
Lust for a Vampire*
Mountain Rest: Special Edition
Quatermass 2 (1957)*
Quatermass and the Pit (1967)*
Target Harry (1969)*
The Good Place: Season Three
The Island (2018)
The Leopard Man (1943)*
The Reptile (1966)*
The White Crow
Too Scared to Scream (1985)*
Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie (1997)*
*Catalog Blu-ray debut