Although putting the government as villain is not unfamiliar, it’s still a risky proposition to cast well-known stars in roles that have them expressing such cynical sentiments. But Safe House doesn’t dwell on the reasons why people in powerful positions might betray their country. It’s always rushing toward another confrontation, another gun battle and another example of brutal violence. The scenes featuring Gleeson, Farmiga and Shepard are the most disappointing, with a few barked orders and run-of-the-mill dialogue that fail to showcase the performers’ abilities.

Safe House has its moments, but in total it comes across as derivative and hyper-violent. With so many Bourne movies behind us, and another on the way, did we need a story that feels so thematically and visually similar to that franchise? It doesn’t show us anything we haven’t seen done before, and done better. The filmmakers didn’t take many chances. They played it too safe.

CAUTIONS:

  • Language/Profanity: Lord’s name taken in vain; “bulls-it”;“s-it”; “screwed”; “a-s”; speculation about Matt’s sexual preference.
  • Alcohol/Smoking/Drugs: Some drinking.
  • Sex/Nudity: Matt changes his shirt a couple of times, and his chest and back are seen; woman in her underwear seen from back; she and Matt shower and kiss, we see brief glimpses of skin; she asks if he wants to go back to bed with her.
  • Violence/Crime: Fighting; necks snapped; lots of gunfire (often from point-blank range); reckless driving; bloody aftermaths of shootings; water-boarding; explosives detonate; bullet removal.
  • Religion/Morals: Discussion about how the truth is “messy” and how no one wants to deal with it; Tobin tells Matt he doesn’t judge his sexual preference.
     

Questions? Comments? Contact the writer at crosswalkchristian@hotmail.com.