LONG SHOT – Review by Susan Granger

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Since the 1930s, audiences have loved Hollywood’s screwball comedies. Unfortunately, in this highly politicized, PC-oriented time, they’re few and far-between. Now, Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen team up as mismatched lovers in a raunchy, far-fetched but funny romance.

Scruffy Fred Flarsky (Rogen) is a fearless journalist who quits his job when an unscrupulous media tycoon (think Rupert Murdock) Parker Wembley (Andy Serkis) takes over his Brooklyn-based alt-weekly.

Despondent, he joins his childhood buddy Lance (O’Shea Jackson Jr.) for a pity-party that winds up at a fancy Manhattan gala.

When he spies Wembley, Fred causes a commotion by telling him off, catching the attention of glamorous U.S. Secretary of State Charlotte Field (Theron), who recognizes him as the 13 year-old neighbor she used to babysit for. That’s their “meet cute” moment.

Since the current Oval Office occupant (Bob Odenkirk), a vain former TV actor, now wants to be a movie star, savvy, idealistic Charlotte is readying a run for POTUS.

Since Charlotte’s consultants told that she’s not funny enough, hiring quick-witted Fred to spice up her speeches seems like a good idea. To her, perhaps, but not to her disapproving aides (June Diane Raphael, Ravi Patel) who are dismayed by Fred’s unkempt appearance and outspoken manner.

Soon, gauche, lovelorn Fred is jetting around the world with elegant, refined Charlotte as she promotes an ambitious global environmental agenda, disrupting diplomatic dinners and dodging an insurrection.

Somewhere along the way, they tumble into bed and get high, perhaps not in that order. Charlotte even manages to handle an international crisis as their clandestine coupling continues.

“Could you maybe not tell anybody about this?” Fred asks her Secret Service agent.

“They wouldn’t believe me anyway,” he retorts.

Working from a witty script by Dan Sterling and Liz Hannah, director Jonathan Levine (50/50, Snatched) milks every laugh – from an amorous skirmish with the handsome Canadian Prime Minister (Alexander Skarsgard) to the fatuous Fox & Friends newscasters (Kurt Braunohler, Claudia O’Doherty, Paul Scheer)

On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, Long Shot is an absurd 7 – escapist fun for an adult audience.

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Susan Granger

Susan Granger is a product of Hollywood. Her natural father, S. Sylvan Simon, was a director and producer at R.K.O., M.G.M. and Columbia Pictures; her adoptive father, Armand Deutsch, produced movies at M.G.M. As a child, Susan appeared in movies with Abbott & Costello, Red Skelton, Lucille Ball, Margaret O'Brien and Lassie. She attended Mills College in California, studying journalism with Pierre Salinger, and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, Phi Beta Kappa, with highest honors in journalism. During her adult life, Susan has been on radio and television as an anchorwoman and movie/drama critic. Her newspaper reviews have been syndicated around the world, and she has appeared on American Movie Classics cable television. In addition, her celebrity interviews and articles have been published in REDBOOK, PLAYBOY, FAMILY CIRCLE, COSMOPOLITAN, WORKING WOMAN and THE NEW YORK TIMES, as well as in PARIS MATCH, ELLE, HELLO, CARIBBEAN WORLD, ISLAND LIFE, MACO DESTINATIONS, NEWS LIMITED NEWSPAPERS (Australia), UK DAILY MAIL, UK SUNDAY MIRROR, DS (France), LA REPUBBLICA (Italy), BUNTE (Germany), VIP TRAVELLER (Krisworld) and many other international publications through SSG Syndicate. Susan also lectures on the "Magic and Mythology of Hollywood" and "Don't Take It Personally: Conquering Criticism and other Survival Skills," originally published on tape by Dove Audio.