Tue, Feb 21 2012 12:39 AM Posted By: Jeri Jacquin
Now playing from director Daniel Espinosa and Relativity Media comes a film about not being safe, not even in a “Safe House.”
This film tells the story of Matt Weston (Ryan Reynolds), a CIA agent working in South Africa. Living a double life, he tells his girlfriend Ana that he has a regular nine-to-fve job. In actuality, he guards a safe house waiting for any potential need.
That need comes along when the notorious CIA rogue Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington) turns himself in. Being a high priority, Frost is taken immediately into the safe house under the protection of agents and Weston.
Within minutes, however, the safe house is compromised and it is up to Weston to not only keep Frost in his sight but also to keep him alive. There is a leak in the CIA as agents Catherine Linklater (Vera Farmiga) and David Barlow (Brendan Gleeson) throw accusations at each other.
But it is Frost who is in control as Weston starts to suspect those he should be trusting.
Washington is amazing as Frost. He is totally in control and nothing fazes him, which is why his character has been alive for so long. I thoroughly enjoyed watching his character unfold with an ending that was not expected.
Reynolds has no problem keeping up with Washington. It turns into a battle of wills and the tension is thick. Reynolds as Weston is a good strong role for him. His character goes from wanting more to getting his wish and he handles it well.
Farmiga and Gleeson are the sub-duo, which was a nice underlying story. Both actors are good at keeping a straight face and it works. Sam Sheppard’s performance (as Harlan Whitford) remains in the background until it isn’t and it’s good to see him back in action.
Other cast members include Ruben Blades as Carlos Villar, Nora Arenezender as Ana Moreau and Robert Patrick as Daniel Kiefer.
Tubs of popcorn
I give “Safe House” three and a half tubs of popcorn out of five. This is a really fun ride filled with chases, suspicion and thrills. Washington and Reynolds play off of each other very well and go fight for fight.
The cinematography is gritty and there are scenes that are grainy but that lends itself to the film’s storyline. There are intermingling stories that keep the audience busy and, at the same time, yelling “Whoa!” on several occasions.
In the end, no one is safe.
© 2009 The Star-News