Director: Jonathan Levine
Release Date: May 3rd 2019
The year was 2011 and movies like Captain America: The First Avenger and Bridesmaids were cultural phenoms. Captain America was one of the first MCU movies, and we knew this Marvel stuff was for real. While Bridesmaids hasn’t been in our lives the past eight years like Captain America has, it was still one of the most significant movies for a couple of years. It had an all-female cast and was Melissa McCarthy’s coming out party. But the year’s best movie fell through the cracks. That was director Jonathan Levine’s 50/50, a rom-com starring Seth Rogan and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, two of Hollywood’s biggest stars.
It’s difficult to know why this movie isn’t considered one of the best of the decade, let alone 2011. Maybe audiences were turned off by the story: A 20-something battling spinal cancer with a 50 percent chance to live is a tough sell. Eight years later Levine and Rogen have collaborated on another rom-com, and once again, it will probably be in the shadow of another blockbuster Avengers film.
In Longshot, Rogen plays Fred Flarsky, a New York Journalist who is wired a little too tight. Charilze Theron is Charlotte Field, one of the most influential and powerful woman in the country. She even runs for president.
The chemistry between Rogen and Theron feels natural and authentic. The pair seems like they truly care for one another, something that is a must in any romantic movie. Longshot is a film that works for a couple of reasons: First, there is a stacked cast with a wonderful script. Secondly, the movie knows its audience.
With one of the lead characters running for president, things get political, a slippery slope in this day and age. Levine navigates this line beautifully. He doesn’t just make fun of one political party, but every political party.
Longshot could be the launching board into stardom for O’shea Jackson Jr. Jackson might have come into your life in 2015, when he played his father and hip-hop legend Ice Cube in Straight Outta Compton. Since Starring as Ice Cube, Jackson hasn’t been in many movies. He played a goofball drug dealer in 2017’s Ingrid Goes West, which showed Jackson is more than just “Ice Cube’s son.” Ingrid Goes West is an underrated, forgotten indie film, much like 50/50.
Jackson isn’t the only funny one in Longshot — Rogen gives him a hand in that department. That said, Jackson keeps the movie together, much like he did in Ingrid Goes West. It will be interesting to see if he gets a shot as a lead in a comedy. In his short sample size, he is, without a doubt, showing that he is capable of a bigger role. O’shea Jackson definitely stole the show yet again in the brilliant Longshot.