‘Hot Pursuit’ Movie Review

Hot Pursuit Movie Review - Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara
SOFIA VERGARA as Daniella Riva and REESE WITHERSPOON as Cooper in the comedy “HOT PURSUIT,” a New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM) release, distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures and MGM.

Hot Pursuit is only 87 minutes long. 87 painful, mind-numbing, grating on your nerves minutes long. By the time you’ve endured every one of those 87 minutes watching two of the shrillest characters to grace the big screen bicker back and forth, you’ll feel like you’ve aged 87 years.

Reese Witherspoon, Sofia Vergara, and director Anne Fletcher are to blame for this headache-inducing “comedy” that attempts to find humor in repeating the same joke over and over and over again. By the third reference to Witherspoon’s height and Vergara’s age, you may want to bury your head in your popcorn and hope that some clogs up your ears. A road-trip comedy with Witherspoon and Vergara might have sounded like a great idea on paper, but the complete lack of chemistry kills any shot this film had at generating laughs. When they ultimately become friends after 80 minutes of yelling at each other, it feels completely false although not in the least bit unanticipated. You know where this mindless mess is heading within the first 15 minutes.

Hot Pursuit finds Witherspoon playing Cooper, an inept, strictly by the book, code-quoting cop who is restricted from hitting the streets after tasering a kid who yelled “Shotgun!” She took the claim literally and tased him believing her life was in danger since she’d never heard shotgun used to call the front seat in a car. Why? Because she’s spent her entire life in the back seat of a squad car traveling the streets with her now-deceased hero cop dad. She’s given a reprieve from desk duty to help transport a drug lord and his voluptuous shoe-obsessed wife to trial. When the drug boss is gunned down, it’s up to Cooper to keep the wife safe from rival drug lords and dirty cops.

Have you watched any of the trailers? Yes? Then you’ve seen the best parts of Hot Pursuit. Save yourself from suffering through Vergara’s exaggerated accent and Witherspoon’s attempt at playing a Southern bumpkin/robot cop who has no social skills and no concept of who people actually speak to each other by watching the trailers again, if you really feel the need to see the film. Normally Vergara and Witherspoon are fun to watch in comedies, but that’s definitely not the case with Hot Pursuit. Neither does anything to elevate the humorless script, and Witherspoon in particular fails to find a way to make her character anything but an annoying little automaton spouting rapid fire cop-speak.

Hot Pursuit is a hot mess that, hopefully, will receive the cold shoulder in theaters.


MPAA rating: PG-13 for sexual content, violence, language and some drug material.

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