When thinking of possible couples for a romantic comedy, Charlize Theron and Seth Rogan might be one of the last pairings that would come to mind.
Yet here we are with this new power couple in “Long Shot,” and the results are surprisingly positive.
Anchored by some pretty believable chemistry between the two leads and a couple of memorable supporting performances, this film finds the right mix between raunchy humor and heart.
In “Long Shot,” Theron plays Charlotte Field, the current secretary of state who has ambitions of running for president. She sees her chance when her dimwitted boss, a former TV star turned president (Bob Odenkirk), announces he is not going to run for a second term.
As Charlotte begins to get her campaign together, she runs into Fred Flarsky (Rogan) – a journalist and activist who still has a crush on her dating back to when she was his babysitter.
The two reconnect well, prompting Charlotte to offer Fred a job as one of her campaign writers. As Fred tries to find out more about Charlotte to give her campaign speeches some personal flair, chemistry develops and romance begins to blossom – much to the dismay of some of Charlotte’s closest confidants.
For a premise like “Long Shot” to work, you have to believe Theron and Rogan could actually develop romantic feelings for each other.
Dan Sterling and Liz Hannah’s script does a pretty good job of establishing a believable connection, but it is Theron and Rogan who really sell it.
Their on-screen chemistry works from the opening moments with Theron showing a lighter touch than we are used to seeing and Rogan at least playing a variation of his stoner self that has a little more depth than usual.
Odenkirk is a delight as the easily manipulated president, but O’Shea Jackson Jr. as Fred’s longtime friend nearly steals the film from the two leads. Jackson brings a presence that really gives “Long Shot” more comedic punch.
“Long Shot” does run a little long, with the second hour not quite as inspired as the first, and it does feel like the film spins its wheels a little bit in the third act. Still, I found myself enjoying “Long Shot” a lot more than I expected, mainly because Theron and Rogan make such a believable couple.
Who could have seen that one coming?