This Means War
This review first appeared in the Sunday Star Times, 19th February 2012
Two CIA agents – best mates on and off the field – fall for the same girl and then fight over her. Shaking hands on a gentlemen’s agreement (“no hanky panky”), the spies swiftly stoop to using the professional resources at their disposal to track their prey and eliminate the competition.
Despite initial misgivings about how Reese Witherspoon’s lovely Lauren could justify having two guys on the go at once, and my doubt that both men could possibly be convincingly attractive, This Means War rapidly caught, and suspended, my disbelief. Chris Pine’s suave F.D.R is perfectly balanced by the naïve, British sweetness of Tom Hardy’s Tuck – and Witherspoon simply looks stunning in every scene, bringing back the slightly goofy girl from Legally Blonde without rendering her a simpering idiot.
Director McG (taking the one-name celebrity thing a little too far, methinks) cut his teeth on the Charlie’s Angels movies, evident in the respect shown for his female lead, and his casting of brilliant comedienne Chelsea Handler as the sassy best friend (hilariously confused for Witherspoon’s mother by a gun-toting baddie). It’s the best bit of silliness we’ve seen in a long time, and utterly enjoyable escapism. If only online dating really was this rewarding.