An action film starring two actresses, with improv reminiscent of Bridesmaids (although no scenes of mass diarrhoea), and multiple ‘age gags’ pretty much sums up The Heat. Which isn’t really necessary a bad thing if that’s what you’re up for.
FBI Agent, Sarah Ashburn (Sandra Bullock) is great at her job, but a pain in the arse. She can solve crimes, but she can’t interact with people. She can understand criminals, but she doesn’t understand basic manners or common courtesy. Also, she steals the next door neighbours’ cat and takes photos with it.
Shannon Mullins (Melissa McCarthy) is great at her job, but a pain in the arse. But instead of metaphorically, I mean that quite literally. She swears, hits, bullies and terrorises her targets, until she gets them to admit the truth. And while it’s effective, it also shows that she’s a tad on the crazy side.
Ashburn and Mullins unwillingly team up together to hunt down a drug kingpin named Larkin; Ashburn so that she can receive her promotion, and Mullins so that she can keep her brother out of trouble and her streets clean. Considering the vast differences in technique, personality and basic morals, of course hilarity ensures over the next 90 minutes as we witness Ashburn and Mullins become not only partners, but friends. Awww. Because this is a comedy, and at the end of comedies, everyone is happy.
The Heat is predictable but nonetheless still enjoyable. For an action comedy it is reasonably paced, so that there weren’t any standout moments when I was bored or waiting for the action, or the comedy, to start. While the storyline is reliable at best, and stagnant at worst, it still ticked all the boxes that one would expect from an action comedy; funny, borderline violent (without being scary), and just interesting enough that you want to know what happens to the bad guy.
For me, I really enjoyed the partnership of Bullock and McCarthy, as it was clearly obvious that they had a blast making this film, which always makes the film that much better. Not only are they close friends, and worked together on the improv sections of the script, but they also played their characters convincingly, perhaps because they’ve both had experience with these characters before; Bullock has played a socially-inept FBI agent in Miss Congeniality, and McCarthy does scary butch exceedingly well, as we’ve seen in Bridesmaids.
Furthermore, I liked that The Heat was the first feature film by screenwriter, Katie Dippold, and she used the buddy cop film genre and spun it, to star two women in the main roles. And even though studio executives were initially reluctant, they eventually went ahead, and the film has turned out to be a commercial success.
Overall, The Heat is an enjoyable night out at the cinemas, that provides light entertainment, laughs and an easy-to-follow storyline. If you’re interested in a comedy that won’t make you over think, but will make you giggle, then I’d suggest checking out The Heat.
Have you seen The Heat? Are you a fan of Sandra Bullock or Melissa McCarthy? Let me know!