Skip to content Skip to left sidebar Skip to right sidebar Skip to footer

Movie Night – 'Hot Pursuit' falls short of entertaining (May 20, 2015 issue)

The vast majority of movies fall into the category of “okay” or “all right.” They are neither particularly good nor bad. “Hot Pursuit” falls into the lower portion of this category. It’s not terrible, but it’s certainly not an award-winning movie either.
Rose Cooper (Reese Witherspoon) was groomed to be a police officer from an early age. The movie opens with various scenes of her childhood in the back seat of her dad’s squad car as he patrolled the streets of San Antonio. Soon young Rose knows the radio codes and police procedures as well as any police officer. She wants to be just like her dad.
The problem that Rose will face her entire career as a police officer is living up to the high standard set by her father. Her father was a legendary officer until he died in the line of duty. Unfortunately, Rose is not on the same career path. After a series of mistakes in the field (the mistakes are not shown in the movie but only talked about), Rose is assigned to work as a clerk in the evidence room for the San Antonio Police Department.
Rose’s antics while on patrol were so well known inside the department that doing a “Cooper” meant somebody had screwed up in a major way. Rose wants a second chance in the field and an opportunity to restore the Cooper name to the lofty heights set by her father.
Rose thinks she has received her chance when she is assigned to assist another officer to escort a member of a Mexican cartel and his wife, Daniella Riva (Sofia Vergara), to Dallas to testify against Vicente Cortez (Joaquin Cosio), the notorious head of the cartel. After an attack at the Riva home everyone is dead but Rose and Daniella. The two go on the run to avoid two sets of assassins and make it to the courthouse in Dallas in time for the trial.
The majority of the movie is the hijinks that Rose and Daniella get into on the road. They encounter one obstacle after another and utilize…unusual…methods to escape. The personalities of Rose and Daniella are at opposite ends of the spectrum, one is a buttoned-down policewoman who speaks only in the stilted jargon specific to police officers and conducts her entire life in the same fashion while Daniella is a woman of passion and beauty. Neither woman truly trusts the other, yet somehow they must work together to stay alive.
“Hot Pursuit” is intended to be a buddy comedy, and in some ways it is. It’s about two completely different women who are thrust together and try to make the best of the situation. The problem is that it’s not really that funny. There are a few moments that make you laugh, but most of the movie is so ridiculous that it makes “Avengers: Age of Ultron” seem more realistic.
Playing the role of Rose Cooper is not the finest work of Reese Witherspoon’s career. Witherspoon seems more suited to playing serious roles. The Texas accent she sports throughout the movie is atrocious. Sofia Vergara, on the other hand, was in her element as the charismatic opposite to Witherspoon’s droll Cooper. Vergara’s forte is comedy and she carries much of the humor of the movie.
“Hot Pursuit” is a little harmless fun, but I would rate it no higher than a home rental. It’s definitely not worth the money at the theater. I shouldn’t be surprised though, the commercials for the movie (other than a scene that was in the trailer but not in the movie) pretty accurately depict the quality of the movie. So, if you saw the commercial and thought the movie looked really funny, “Hot Pursuit” may be the movie for you.
Grade: C-
Rated PG-13 for sexual content, violence, language, and some drug material.