Safe House: Reviewed
Ryan Reynolds plays Matt Weston a young CIA employee who aspires to becoming a fully fledged field operative but for the time being he is relegated to being the housekeeper of a CIA ‘safe house’ in Cape Town. Despite his best efforts to convince his mentor Barlow (Brendan Gleeson) back at HQ in Virginia that he is ready to be a proper agent , he spends much of his time doing his best Steve McQueen ‘Hilts the Cooler King’ impression bouncing a ball of the floor and wall.
It’s only when there is a last minute arrival at the Safe House by a group of CIA agents transporting a high security prisoner for interrogation that Matt’s life will never be the same again. When the prisoner is unmasked Matt recognises him as Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington) a dangerous ex-CIA agent turned rogue. Matt is also concerned about the unorthodox torture techniques carried out by Agent Kiefer (Robert Patrick) the man in charge.
During the interrogation the Safe House is breached by a group of armed mercenaries and gunfire is exchanged. Frost reminds the young agent that he is responsible for the safety of his house guest and Matt goes on the run with Frost as his prisoner.
What then follows is a series of exciting car chases, a great deal of noisy gunfire, fisticuffs and double-cross, what else could you ask for?
The good thing about film is that it can be quite subjective. I have seen many mixed reviews of Safe House and I must admit many of which are not too complimentary and accusing the film of being a bit ‘Ho-hum’ and predictable. All I know is that I absolutely loved it. I was on the edge of my seat most of the way through the screening. Ryan Reynolds has finally made his first grown-up film and has shown that he can carry a movie. He can also hold his own with the legendary Denzel Washington who is as reliable as ever and never lets you down. Although one reviewer wrote that he pretty much sleepwalked his way through it.
In my opinion this is what movies are all about and I think some people try to read too much into what serious message they think the actors should be trying to put across. All I can say is, in the words of Maximus Decimus Meridius “Are you not entertained?” Don’t think too much just watch and enjoy.
A cracking four out of five stars.