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Jacqueline Monahan's Movie Reviews

Hot Pursuit | Reese Witherspoon, Sofía Vergara, Robert Kazinsky, Joaquín Cosío | Review

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2 Chicks SmallJacqueline Monahan

Jacqueline  Monahan

Las Vegas Round The Clock
http://www.lasvegasroundtheclock.com
Jacqueline Monahan is an educator for the GEAR UP program at UNLV.
She is also an entertainment reporter for Lasvegasroundtheclock.com
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Hot Pursuit | Reese Witherspoon, Sofía Vergara, Robert Kazinsky, Joaquín Cosío | Review

Buckle up.  You’re going on a wildly contrived road trip that’s supposed to be an uproarious comedy, but rest assured, you won’t die…laughing, that is.  Your brain cells may be in danger, though.

Two likeable and talented actresses (one of them an Academy Award winner) portray Rose Cooper (Reese Witherspoon), a by-the-book, straight arrow cop with a pesky misstep in her past, and Daniella Riva (Sofía Vergara) the glamorous wife of a government witness set to testify against brutal drug cartel leader Vincente Cortez (Joaquín Cosío).

The unlikely duo, a study in contrasts, find themselves on the lam from two different teams of armed bad guys, one a pair of crooked cops, who frame the two for murder.  There’s plenty to run from including the implausible plot.

In the film’s one good running gag, news reports about the two women make Cooper progressively shorter and Daniela progressively older.  That is just one thing that the women protest, in addition to just about everything about each other.  Daniella thinks Cooper looks like a boy and is boring in dress and attitude.  Cooper thinks Daniella is frivolous and way too attached to her shoe collection and décolletage.

Hmm…forced togetherness…total opposites…lots of conflict and insults…just as original as being wrongly accused and on the lam, right?  Yeah, right.

During their adventures across Texas, the pair commandeer a series of vehicles, impersonate a lesbian couple, change clothes publicly at a road-stop store, impersonate a deer, handcuff each other, wrestle for gun superiority, and attempt to lose a couple of shooters (the ammo-loaded kind) during a high speed chase using a tour bus full of senior citizens (some cringe-worthy slapstick there).

Randy (Robert Kazinsky) a potential love interest for Cooper pops up (in the bed of one of the trucks they commandeer) and weaves in and out of the plot, ankle monitor and all, an insignificant backstory.  The real reason he’s here is because what Cooper needs (doesn’t every woman?) is a man – another original concept.

Director Anne Fletcher (The Proposal) helms a film that suffers from clumsy timing and tired stereotypes (Latinas are hot-tempered, senior citizens are dopey). Scriptwriters David Feeney (TV’s The New Girl) and John Quaintance (Material Girls) don’t do these girls any favors.  

The short 87-minute running time is actually a plus, and there are outtakes during the end credits that are funnier than most of the film’s attempts at humor.

Witherspoon and Vergara do emanate a quirky chemistry that may find them teaming up again on something smarter than this stale vehicle, filled with characters that could rightly be named Thelma and Puh-leeze.

 

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