A political odd couple romantic-comedy starring Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron doesn’t necessarily sound as though it should work, however Jonathan Levine’s Long Shot is certainly well worth watching.
It stars Seth Rogen as Fred Flarsky, a journalist at a small independent newspaper known for his strong views and moral stances. At a party with his best friend Lance (O’Shea Jackson Jr.) he encounter Charlotte Field, the Secretary of State, and Fred’s former babysitter. After she hires him to help improve her speeches in anticipation of launching a presidential campaign, something which also leads to an unlikely romance blooming.
As both a political satire Long Shot works well. The majority of the best jokes certainly fall into this category. Whether digs as existing political systems or people, the former TV Star President, hilariously played by Bob Odenkirk, doesn’t take much figuring out, but also the whole social conventions around US Politics, particularly the treatment of women in politics. People may feel a little burnt out by politics in this day and age, but I hope that doesn’t turn people off Long Shot, because as political satire it is incredibly sharp and very funny.
The Rom-Com aspect of the film is a little more mixed. The lead performance from Theron is fantastic, she’s brilliant, and continues to show her incredible ability to blend drama and comedy seamlessly. Her chemistry with Rogen is also great, they really sell the odd couple romance, even if Seth Rogen does mainly seem to be playing Seth Rogen. The supporting performances of Jackson Jr. and June Diane Raphael. However the more typical Rom-Com jokes are the ones that tend to not quite land in the film, but the political satire certainly helps to make up for this.
Whilst not all of the jokes land, there are enough that do to make Long Shot worth your time, particularly when backed up by the great performances and some incredible astute political commentary.