Sunday, July 28, 2019

Video review: "Long Shot"

Let’s get this out of the way first: no, in real life women who look like Charlize Theron do not fall for guys who look like Seth Rogen. Unless, of course, they actually are Seth Rogen.

Well, I guess Billy Joel and Christie Brinkley were a real thing. But let’s stipulate that outside of showbiz -- where outsized talent, wealth and fame tend to kick the usual laws of attractiveness out  the window -- these sort of pairings do not naturally occur.

But that’s the main dynamic of “Long Shot,” in which a nobody loser falls for an incredibly ambitious and beautiful woman, and she somehow returns his affection. In fact, she’s not just your workaday looker; Charlotte Field is actually the U.S. Secretary of State and running for the big job: POTUS.

Rogen plays Fred Flarsky, a high-minded but bottom-feeding journalist who finds himself out of work and running into Charlotte, who babysat for him back when they were teens. He had it bad for her, and it doesn’t take much to rekindle his desire. She offers him a job as speechwriter, he accepts, and they start jet-setting around the world, reconnecting and love blooming.

Director Jonathan Levine and screenwriters Dan Sterling and Liz Hannah pepper the background with interesting supporting characters.

Bob Odenkirk play the current president, a former TV actor who sees the White House as a springboard to features films. Andy Serkis is a nasty media mogul who sees a strong independent contender as a personal affront. And O’Shea Jackson is Fred’s best friend, a successful entrepreneur who offers some unexpected insight.

There are some goofy aspects to “Long Shot,” but I was surprised that the beauty-and-the-geek pairing is actually the best thing about it.

Bonus features consist entirely of 11 documentary featurettes. They are:
  • “All’s Fair in Love & Politics: Making Long Shot”
  • “Seven Minutes in Heaven: Seth + Charlize Uncensored”
  • “Secret Weapons”
  • “Epic Flarsky Falls”
  • “Prime Minister Steward O-Rama”
  • “Hanging with Boyz II Men”
  • “Just Kinda Crushing It!”
  • “The First Mister: A Portrait”
  • “An Imperfect Union”
  • “Love & Politics”
  • “Friends Like These”



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