OVERALL GRADE: B-
AUDIENCE: No one under 14
BIG or SMALL SCREEN: Small
RATED: R for pervasive language, strong crude content and some violence.
"I'll shut the door on you. Will you lay down here and put your head in the door and I'll slam it about 157 thousand times?"
While no one has their head slammed by a door, everyone who views this film should expect to laugh about 157 thousand times. With a witty script written by the up-and-coming Katie Dippold, Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy bring almost 2 hours of entertainment in their latest smash. A simple storyline leaves plenty of room for memorable moments, especially those involving an angry Albino and Pumpkin, the cat. In what will inevitably go down as one of the best comedies of the summer, 'The Heat' demands nothing more than a good time.
Bullock, in her first film in 2 years, is Asburn, a F.B.I. agent determined to get the job done precisely by the book. Despite the fact that she has closed more cases than anyone in her department, Asburn's off-putting demeanor and total lack of friendliness make her unbearable in the eyes of her coworkers, as well as her boss. In an attempt to garner a promotion, Asburn is assigned to go after a known drug lord in Boston. Enter McCarthy as the frighteningly hilarious Mullins, and we've got a winner.
Yes, we all know that Bullock is a good, make that great actress. Her Oscar winning performance in 'The Blind Side' is living, breathing proof. Yes, she is her usual, well-acted self in 'The Heat', but unfortunately she does not add much to this film. While she is a necessary character that we ultimately learn a valuable lesson from in the end, Bullock is only there as the beta to McCarthy's alpha. McCarthy IS this film, from her ridiculously lazy wardrobe to her fabulous snarky comments. One of the many highlights from the film would have to be when Mullins is searching throughout her boss' office during a meeting with him and Asburn. While I don't want to spoil just what she is looking for, I will say; it is most noteworthy. Although McCarthy steals the show, her partnership with Bullock is quite commendable, with the audience rooting for a lasting friendship from beginning to end.
All movies have their flaws, and 'The Heat' is no exception. Despite its many successes, there are a few missteps that could have been avoidable. Towards the end, one almost wishes Mullins would stop making wise-cracks, as you just want to find out 'who dunnit'. Personally, as an avid 'Saturday Night Live' viewer, I was thrilled to find out one of its cast members, Taran Killam, had a role in this film. Sadly, I was only left disappointed, as the extent of Killam's character is the fact that he works with the Albino. He is an absolute rock star every Saturday night at 11:35, but not here. His character is given his 15 minutes in the spotlight, but nothing more. 'Tis a shame, but a small one when all other factors are considered.
With a respectable cast and more one-liners than you could imagine, 'The Heat' stays true to its title. While the film is enjoyable, it begins to fizzle towards the end, needing a microwave boost. I'm not saying that you won't have a good time; what I am saying is that I hope Bullock doesn't sign on for a sequel.
'The Heat' Trailer:
Want another review? Check out the phenomenal Peter Travers of Rolling Stone