At first glance, Long Shot seems to be another in a long line of moderately humorous films about a man-child getting the girl.
And partially, it is. It both contains the heartfelt emotions of a conventional romantic comedy and the adult one-liners and cultural crassness of Seth Rogen one-liners.
Yet, Long Shot manages to be five or six different films in one boisterously funny, timely package, and that’s exactly why it’s not just the comedy people want, but it’s exactly the right dose of politics, romance and laughs people need.
With an oaf in American office, it takes Canadian Rogen, the unending charisma of Charlize Theron, and the writing and directing talents of the man behind feature film 50/50, respectively, to take on a political comedy in this climate.
When crass, opinionated and constantly moralistic journalist Fred (Rogen) quits his job to show his unease over a corporate takeover, he goes on a bender with his best friend (O’Shea Jackson Jr.) to commiserate.
But instead — at a dinner party he’s woefully under-dressed for — he locks eyes with his high school babysitter Charlotte (Theron), who now happens to be Secretary of State, eyeing a 2020 presidential run.
She hopes to take over from TV star president-turned-actual-president Chambers (Bob Odenkirk, of Better Call Saul fame), in a hilarious twist on the real-life Donald Trump situation.
She hires Fred on a whim to write jokes for her speeches, and the two become closer and closer as the campaign trail winds along. The two leads interweave perfect, performing a delicate dance as they spout one-liners and take turns providing belly laughs.
Along for the ride, Jackson Jr., son of Ice Cube, is a comedic gem, taking the seriousness of his Straight Outta Compton role and flipping the script a full 360. He is flat-out hilarious, and has a bright future ahead.
As for Rogen, this is his best role in years, and proof that when he’s passionate, he can still deliver.
The real surprise, though, is Theron. She proved with the Mad Max sequel she could be an bonafide action star, and now, she’s graced us with this winning comedic performance.
With a stacked cast, a relate-able premise and a script that capitalizes on world events, this truly is one of the most re-watchable, instantly funny comedies in years, and will go straight into my collection when it hits retailer shelves.