Recliner reviews | Even with Witherspoon, ‘Hot Pursuit’ isn’t worth it

Sofia Vergara and Reese Witherspoon in “Hot Pursuit.”
Sofia Vergara and Reese Witherspoon in “Hot Pursuit.”

“Hot Pursuit”

In her three previous films, Reese Witherspoon had a good run. She was nominated for an Oscar in “Wild,” took on a good cause in “The Good Lie” and put in a catchy smaller role in “Inherent Vice.”

Sofía Vergara has made a solid career out of talking funny on ABC’s “Modern Family,” and making mediocre movies during her off-season.

It only makes sense that these two get together for a cross-country, comedy romp ... just kidding, it makes no sense at all.

It’s one misstep and pratfall after another, and yep you guessed, Witherspoon and Vergara are complete opposites. Try as they might, they can’t get these two to gel.

This film is really catered for fans of director Anne Fletcher, “27 Dresses” and “The Proposal.” The laughs can be described as cute. They can also be described as predictable or silly. The best part about this film is if you run away from it, it doesn’t chase you – pass.

“The Loft”

When five married guys share a swanky, downtown loft to take their hook-ups to, it’s only a matter of time before something bad happens.

The bad happening here is a dead woman found in the bed. The cast reads like a B-movie dream – Karl Urban, James Marsden, Wentworth Miller and Eric Stonestreet (also from “Modern Family”). None of these actors are pulling in the crowds by themselves, but together, they may have something.

Director Erik Van Looy made this sexually charged thriller in Belgium back in 2008. In the redelivery for American audiences, he manages to hold onto the suspense and tension.

Matthias Schoenaerts, the star in the original, returns here to make this his first American film role. There’s nothing to lofty about the story, just deceit and adultery and some mystery, but it’s the telling that makes it worth a watch.

“True Story”

This is a horrible title for a film.

Guess what? It’s based on the true story of Michael Finkel, a discredited New York Times reporter, and Christian Longo, an accused killer who took Finkel’s name while he was on the lamb. After Longo is arrested, the two form a strange bond.

James Franco plays Longo. Jonah Hill plays Finkel and seems to be feeling right at home with dramatic roles. This makes his third, after “Moneyball” and “The Wolf of Wall Street.”

Writer/director Rupert Goold makes his directorial debut. Goold gets into some really creepy areas and captures some nice moments between Franco and Hill.

Hill hits on all cylinders. But there are just as many missed opportunities. The pace never really amps up or evens out. What should’ve been a game of duplicity and questions and suspenseful explanations turns out limp at times. Hill gives enough to make this barely worth a watch.

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