★★½ | Zach Hester
Long Shot was an easy movie for me to get excited about. With a cast led by Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron, the film looks like a promising cavalcade of political comedy mixed with a modern update of what we now view as a romantic comedy.
The story of Long Shot follows Fred (Seth Rogen), a renegade journalist who loses his job before landing a job with Charlotte Field (Charlize Theron), the popular United States Secretary of State with presidential ambitions, who happens to be his former babysitter.
At its core, the film is a pretty good, despite being fairly unrealistic, take on political comedy. In this era, I tend to compare most political satire to the brilliance of the recently ended Veep on HBO, and unfortunately, this movie does not hold a candle. It’s funny when it allows jokes to just flow instead of going out of the way to make one.
The script is overall a mess in the serious moments, but truly shines with the chemistry between Rogen, who is underwhelming, and Theron, who delivers a great performance as the “youngest Secretary of State” in history. The supporting performances of Bob Odenkirk, June Diane Raphael and O’Shea Jackson Jr. are also noteworthy and steal the show every time they’re on screen.
The comedic aspects of the script really go well when it makes light of the objectification of women in politics. It’s a social commentary taken in a joking, exaggerated way that proves women are definitely treated far more unfairly in politics. The jokes are hilarious in-universe, but in reality with women in politics *actually* being treated this way, it also leaves a small pit in your stomach.
While Long Shot did not hold up to all of my expectations, it was a very fun ride. It’s a typical nerd-gets-the-girl film wrapped inside a movie about women in power. There’s no doubt that it will make you laugh and has a lot more heart than most raunchy comedies.