The Heat (2013)

The Heat

Director: Paul Feig

Writer: Katie Dippold

Cast: Sandra Bullock, Melissa McCarthy, Marlon Wayans, Thomas F. Wilson, Michael McDonald, Demian Bichir, Michael Rapaport, Jane Curtin, Spoken Reasons, Dan Bakkedahl, Taran Killam, Peter Weireter, John Ross Bowie, William Xifaras, Cary 'Big Shug' Guy

Synopsis: An uptight FBI Special Agent is paired with a foul-mouthed Boston cop to take down a ruthless drug lord.

MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language, strong crude content and some violence

Buddy Cop Formula 101

As I review all these films, I come to realize that many of them are great. A lot of them can suck, but more often than not, you'll find more that are just like "The Heat." Movies that aren't necessarily bad per say, but ones that are too formulaic to the point that they're simply forgettable. And to make matters worse, this film doesn't even try to be anything original to stand out from the other buddy cop films.

At least in previous buddy cop movies, you could always tell there was some degree of effort to make the film stand out. Yet with "The Heat", there's really nothing about it that would make it that original; unless we're counting the fact that it's two women cops being partnered up instead of two guys.

The premise of the film? You have a strict by the book FBI agent trying to take down a drug lord, who happens to be something of a neat freak as well. However, due to a series of events, she finds herself partnered with some slob of a cop, who not only breaks the rules on a consistent basis, but she's also something of a smart ass as well. Gee, this doesn't sound like a rip off of "Lethal Weapon" now doesn't it? I mean you have two cops that are almost exactly the opposite, in terms of personality, being forced to team up together to take down a criminal.

Then you have some boss that yells at the protagonists a lot, for comedy relief. At some point, you know they're going to go to end up getting suspended for some bulls*** reason. You know at some point they're going to learn crap about each other, and they're going to bond. And like all buddy cop films, you know they're going to end up taking down the bad guys anyway, after being suspended; hence earning back their credibility at the end.

I would put a spoiler warning in the last paragraph, but let's face it. Unless you've never seen a movie in your entire life, then chances are you know exactly how this film is going to end just by watching the trailers alone. Nothing about this film is remotely subtle, or even tries to be.

On the bright side, both the actresses have a lot of good chemistry together. Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy play off each other rather well, as it's a shame they weren't given a better script to work with.

As for Thomas F. Wilson, he was simply hilarious in his role. Some of you might remember him as the iconic bully from the "Back to the Future" films but in "The Heat", he plays a strict captain of the police force. Not to mention, it's funny to see Melissa McCarthy and him exchange vulgar repoirte with each other.

Plus, the twist at the end was nice. Having said all that though, the film still suffers from being overly generic to the point that it's forgettable. All the other supporting characters are one dimensional, and the story is nothing if not insanely predictable.

However, if you're one of these movie fans that's looking for a good action comedy that'll make you laugh, then "The Heat" isn't a bad choice to watch. In spite of all it's problems, the movie is fairly decent for what it tries to be. Would I say it's one of the best action comedies out there? Certainly not, but for what it happens to be, it's enjoyable as long as you don't expect too much out of it.

As I mentioned earlier, Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy carry most of the film to make it decent enough for a rental. Plus, the few moments with Thomas F. Wilson are funny as well. Unfortunately, it just lacks a lot in the originality department.

Overall, I would probably have to give this movie a two out of four. It's not a great movie by any means, nor would I even call it a good one. However, it's a decent guilty pleasure film at best that I'm sure most audiences will enjoy. Sadly, I just wished it could've been more.

© 2014 Steven Escareno

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