A young CIA agent is tasked with looking after a fugitive in a safe house. But when the safe house is attacked, he finds himself on the run with his charge.
RottenTomatoes [54% | 56%]
I’m pretty sure that if you put Denzel Washington [Training Day, American Gangster] and Ryan Reynolds [Buried, Green Lantern] together in a project, you’ve got appeal from pretty much every age and sex, especially the ladies. I’m not sure if a crime/thriller/mystery/action film is the best way to use that viewer appeal, but regardless, I think a lot of people would want to see this movie for that fact alone.
Matt Weston [Reynolds] is the CIA equivalent of a night-watch security officer. He doesn’t usually see much action, and he is close to being able to leave the job and move away with his girlfriend. But all of that changes when he is surprised by a call from his boss informing him of a high profile target coming in to his facility. Tobin Frost [Washington] is a former CIA agent who is infamous for both his incredible interrogation and his betrayal of the CIA, selling information about the organization. When Frost’s enemies come knocking at the safe house’s door, it is up to Weston to keep the target, and himself, alive.
Denzel Washington is a top tier actor, and watching him work is always a treat, even if the movie itself isn’t very good. Playing a mysterious bad guy, as he does in this film, is particularly fun, for he has a creepy calm yet intense tone. Ryan Reynolds is a different story. While I doubt he will ever earn an award or nomination for his acting abilities, he is no doubt an entertaining actor who has an enjoyable track record of films. It is certainly an interesting leading duo.
This is another project all about the actors, which you get several of during the first half of the year. Director Daniel Espinosa and writer David Guggenheim [not to be confused with Davis Guggenheim, producer and director of many tv shows, movies, and documentaries] are both rookies trying to show off what they’ve got, and they’ve got some okay ability shown off in this film. Nothing noteworthy, either good or bad. There are plenty of holes you can pick in the plot, and there isn’t much mystery for a movie that has been assigned that label.
2/4 – Safe House is exactly what you saw in its previews, and is carried by its cast.