Safe House

When I say the name Robert De Niro, it likely conjures images of the second Godfather, Taxi Driver, The Deer Hunter, Raging Bull, Goodfellas, or the handful of other great roles he’s played in the past. I’m guessing you aren’t thinking of any movie he’s made since 1995 (Casino or Heat). Basically, we’ve given him a pass for making a decade and a half of terrible movies. From the start of his career until Ronin in 1998, he’s got 38 certified fresh movies on Rotten Tomatoes vs 6 Rotten movies (that’s an .864 batting average for those of you scoring at home). Since 1998? 10 fresh movies, 23 rotten movies for a .303 batting average).

So why start a review of a movie not starring Robert De Niro with a bunch of Robert De Niro facts? Quite simply, I’m a little worried Denzel Washington is taking a trip down Robert De Niro lane. If you look at Denzel’s career from 1991-2001, he’s made a bunch movies that were both socially important – Malcolm X, Hurricane, Philadelphia – along with extremely entertaining – Crimson Tide, He Got Game (except for the last scene), Training Day – or profitable (Remember the Titans, Pelican Brief). Since 2002, he’s not made bad movies like De Niro. With the exception of American Gangster (which I thought was a wee bit overrated) and Inside Man, he’s just made a bunch of really average movies.

Coming into seeing Safe House, I was quite excited to see this movie. The trailer looked pretty solid and although I hadn’t read any reviews (I’ve been reading less and less movie reviews lately), the buzz I’d heard around the movie was mostly positive.

A half hour into this movie, I was all in. Ryan Reynolds is someone I’ve liked in the past (Two Guys, A Girl, and a Pizza Place, Van Wilder) and Denzel is always pretty solid (usually in a role that involves him playing a different version of “Denzel.”) Initially, this movie struck me as a good knockoff of The Bourne Identity.

Then, I fell asleep. Figuratively (not literally, unfortunately). The second half of the movie just completely lacked any punch and imagination whatsoever. The story became somewhat stale and predictable. The last half hour of the movie turned into almost forced movie watching.

It was really unfortunate because I think they had 85% of what it takes to make a really good movie. They had a solid cast, a quality action-filled opening sequence, and a really good trailer. It just felt like somewhere in the middle third of the movie, there was a chance to make the movie unique and interest, but they took the safe and predictable road instead.

Overall, I’d say you can skip this one.

5.0

out of 10

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21

08 2012

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  1. Cory #
    1

    Yep, we definitely felt the same way. It’s funny how we watched the same movie and (literally) had the same experience (days to finish, falling asleep).

    • 2

      If you watch The Dictator in the next few days and have trouble getting past the halfway point, I’m going to start thinking you hacked my Redbox account…



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