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126 of 139 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Entertaining
When the title of a movie is Safe House, one can assume that this CIA safe house in South Africa is any but safe for its intended guest, Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington) a rogue CIA agent. Daniel Espinosa keeps the movie moving at a good clip with smart cinematography. Denzel Washington is believable and classy. Ryan Reynolds provides a good supporting role as a CIA...
Published on February 27, 2012 by John Robie

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good but . . .
this mirrored the Bourne movies too closely . . . agent stuck in the middle of action, woman leader trying to find him, rogue internal agent giving away the secrets. And of course the CIA is the corrupt agency . . . tired of the same old
Published on June 19, 2012 by Massachusetts reader


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie!, June 26, 2012
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Very interesting movie and I enjoyed watching the 3 times I watched it. Kept me very interested the entire time I watched!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This is an Action Flick when..., June 24, 2012
By 
Deborah P (San Pedro, CA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Safe House (DVD)
...I expected more psychological thriller.

But Denzel's acting skills are at their peak. Ryan Reynolds positively surprised me. There are a couple of small surprises and they play out well.

And while this was an action movie, there was respect for Denzel's age. He's still moving but HIS action hero is using more brains than brawn...as well as some reading glasses when necessary. I'm glad my hero is not trying to pretend to be other than who he is....other than some hair dye here and there.

The story line was well put together but something is a little bit lacking AFTER the end, in the wrap up sequences. I'm thinking they were saving a little something in case they want to make a sequel. That usually takes a little steam out and it did here too.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 4 1/2 stars-Adrenaline Rush!, June 24, 2012
By 
Robert Badgley (St Thomas,Ontario,Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Safe House (DVD)
Safe House(Feb/12)is one of the few movies I have actually gone OUT to see in recent years,and I must say I was very impressed with it.This film ,once it gets started,just never stops;as the action is constant and can even at times take your breath away.The camera stays in fairly tight throughout which also adds to the intensity and immediacy of what you`re seeing.While the DVD`s sound cannot match the dynamics of the theatrical sound system(every shot,punch and bang sounded like a bolt of lightning packed into a millisecond)it still is quite good.
The plot involves a CIA safe house in Cape Town,South Africa.It is manned by one person,Matt Weston played by Ryan Reynolds.For almost a year he has been withering away in this stifling post and he has been itching for a transfer....anywhere.Into this relatively boring routine steps one Tobin Frost,played by Denzel Washington.Frost is a former member of the CIA,just like Weston,but who climbed the ladder and became a first class interrogator.Frost has obtained a list made by Israeli intelligence listing all the bad apples in similar organizations around the world.A friend in MI6 has given him the list and he is now on the run from those who wish that list captured and destroyed.In other words Frost is a dead man.He turns himself into the local US embassy and he is in turn moved into Weston`s safe house.
It is not long before the safe house itself is under attack and Weston is fleeing across town with his prisoner.Weston is ordered to go to a stadium during a soccer game to retrieve a GPS which will tell Weston the location of the nearest safe house.However during this time Frost manages to escape.Weston reports in that he has lost his prisoner and is also on the run from the local police himself,due to a scuffle at the stadium.Meanwhile Frost has gone to the house of an old friend to have him make him a passport.During this time Weston has an idea on where Frost may be and heads out.The men who attacked the safe house have followed Frost and are now bashing in the door of his friend`s home.His friend lies dead as he flees.Weston has arrived on the scene and helps save Frost and abscond with him to a new safe house.
Frost and Weston arrive at the new location and are just settling in when the safe house attendant turns on Weston and he is again in a struggle for his life.Weston barely comes out alive and he makes it back to Frost who he cuffed to a pipe in a room.Weston asks what exactly these people are after and Frost tells him exactly what it entails.Frost then grabs the cuff keys from a semi conscious Weston and escapes.When Weston regains consciousness he is in a bed with his CIA boss from the States beside him,asking what has happened and the whereabouts of Frost.The answer is not long coming as Frost suddenly reappears shooting his way back into the house to get Weston.Frost gets blindsided and shot by Weston`s boss and eventually dies.Weston`s boss is shot in turn by Weston and Weston now has the secret Frost carried.
Back at CIA headquarters Weston submits his report to the director who asks about the documents Frost had.Weston feigns innocence,knowing how damaging those secrets are.The film ends as the CIA and agencies of similar ilk around the world,have their top agents arrested for illegal activities.Frost`s original intentions come to fruition thanks to Weston.
The film starts out slowly as we are introduced to the two main characters.The moment Frost is driving away with his MI6 contact,who suddenly gets shot while driving,the heat,as they say,is on and the film never stops until the end.One doesn`t know who to trust and the cold,calculating killer and traitor that Frost is first portrayed as,starts to unravel,slowly but surely.And everywhere Frost goes,assassins follow,which is just another on-going mystery on top of many others thrown into the mix.
Washington and Reynolds are both outstanding in their roles and play their roles with an intensity that is right on the beam.Washington as Frost is as cold and stoic as his name implies and Reynolds plays the bored CIA agent whose life is suddenly turned topsy turvy and who is soon fighting for his life,wonderfully.Washington also directed this thriller and does a great job at that post also.
Technically the film is clear and crisp in it w/s a/r of 2:40:1.Extras include four featurettes and the trailer.
All in all a highly recommended piece of film making.As a highly intense drama/thriller they do not get much better than this.It is violent,but it is all justifiable within the film`s context;not violence for violence sake.Buy it today.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Predictable, July 28, 2012
By 
This review is from: Safe House (DVD)
2.5 stars.

Odds are, you've probably figured out the plot before the movie starts. The story is chiche and been re-hashed in many other movies. What saves the movie is Denzel Washington (could be be any more awesome? I don't think so). Take him out, however, and this DVD is a waste of plastic.

Still, if you are not picky about plot and like seeing car chases and explosions, then I'm sure you'll love this...

Not recommended.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I love the casting, but the movie is unremarkable, July 14, 2012
By 
Steven Aldersley (Oshawa, Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I almost went to see Safe House in the theater, and barely resisted the urge to blind-buy the Blu-ray, and I'm glad that I waited. After borrowing the movie from a friend, I know that I saved myself $20.

It's not that Safe House is terrible, it's just formulaic, mediocre, and badly-written.

The basic story is built around Matt Weston (Ryan Reynolds), who looks after a safe house in Cape Town, South Africa. The job involves a lot of sitting around, but he springs into action when he learns that Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington), a rogue CIA agent, has been captured, and will be delivered into his custody. When a recovery team, led by Agent Kiefer (Robert Patrick), is attacked and defeated, Weston is left to bring Frost in himself.

Weston is ambitious and wants to work at a more high profile location, but he's young and unproven in the eyes of his bosses. We are shown how he is regarded during an exchange involving his superiors, Barlow (Brendan Gleeson) and Linklater (Vera Farmiga), at HQ.

Imagine you were given the chance to write the screenplay. How would you make it stand out from previous entries in the genre? We have seen this subject handled well in the Bourne series, and reasonably well in Salt. Safe House doesn't belong in the same class.

What's wrong with the movie? The excellent cast is virtually ignored. Instead of establishing the characters and giving them depth, we are given very little background information. The front cover promises an adrenaline rush, and that's all that we are given. If you love action movies and don't care about the plot, Safe House delivers. But if you want to know why these events are occurring, it's not exactly an important part of the mix. There's a lot of gunfire, but meaningful dialogue is at a minimum.

If I had the pleasure of directing actors like Washington, Farmiga and Gleeson, I would make use of their abilities. Washington doesn't put a foot wrong, he's just given nothing to work with. Farmiga's screen time is extremely limited, but remember how effective she was in a similar role in The Departed? Gleeson is one of a kind and excelled in movies such as In Bruges and The Guard, but his character has no depth in Safe House. I see this as a wasted opportunity.

In the Bourne movies, we see how Jason Bourne meets his girlfriend, and how that relationship becomes meaningful. When she is threatened, we feel his pain and we react. Weston's girlfriend in Safe House may as well have been a cardboard cutout, and as a result, we feel nothing when he examines their relationship.

Safe House focuses on the action element. You'll see shootouts, car chases, explosions and people running. You might even understand why all this is happening, even though it's just a by-the-numbers screenplay. The movie grossed over $200 million and you won't scream for your money back, but I wouldn't bother buying the Blu-ray unless you are an action junkie. I love the cast, but against my expectations, I'm severely disappointed by the end result. Watch Bourne again instead, or watch Anton Corbijn's, The American, as that actually has some fresh ideas.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Safe House" is great!, February 12, 2012
"Safe House" is great! This is how the story goes: For the past year, Matt Weston has been frustrated by his inactive, backwater post in Cape Town. A "housekeeper" who aspires to be a full-fledged agent, the loyal company man has been waiting for an opportunity to prove himself. When the first and only occupant he's had proves to be the most dangerous man he's ever met, Weston readies for duty. Tobin Frost has eluded capture for almost a decade. One of the best ops men that the CIA's known, the ex-intelligence officer has given up assets and sold military intel to anyone with cash since he turned. From trading secrets to North Korea to aiding splinter cells, the damage he's done to the U.S. is immeasurable. And he's now back on the reservation with a secret. As soon as Frost is brought in for debriefing, mercenaries come and tear apart Weston's safe house. Barely escaping, the unlikely partners must discover if their attackers have been sent by terrorists or someone on the inside who will kill anyone standing in the way. Now it's up to Weston to figure out who he can trust before they're both eliminated from the game.

The cast led by Denzel Washington (who also executive produced) (as Tobin Frost) & Ryan Reynolds (as Matt Weston) is great. The directing by Daniel Espinosa is great. The story & screenplay by David Guggenheim is great.

The music by Ramin Djawadi is great. The cinematography by Oliver Wood is great. The film editing by Richard Pearson is great. The casting by Sarah Finn is great. The production design by Brigitte Broch is great. The art direction by Jonathan Hely-Hutchinson, Shira Hockman, Pablo Maestre Galli & Erik Polczwartek is great. The set decoration by Melinda Launspach, Andrew McCarthy & Tom Olive is great. The costume design by Susan Matheson is great.

This is a great action thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat with your heart racing and your mind thinking at the same time. Denzel Washington is great as usual in another memorable performance. This is another great film on Denzel's resume.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Movie Review! - (...) - @tss5078, April 20, 2014
By 
Todd Smith (East Rockaway, NY United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Safe House (Amazon Instant Video)
Denzel Washington is one of my favorite actors, and anyone who follows him knows that he is pure intensity. For that reason, he is usually best paired with someone who is charismatic, but in this film, he's paired with Ryan Reynolds, another intense actor, leading to a very straightforward and inflexible film. Safe House is your typical C.I.A. inspired action film, that features a wanted traitor turning himself in, in order to escape the men he's doubled crossed. The names and places are different, but the story is the same, lots of fighting and corruption, traitors and double agents, it's nothing new. The intensity in Safe House is just off the charts, as there isn't one second of comic relief. The movie starts intense and just continues that way until the end, which really does an injustice to the always strong performance of Washington. The fact of the matter is that this film could have been an interesting one, had Washington and Reynolds had any chemistry whatsoever, but they were basically the same person, on opposite sides of the table. Chemistry in a film like this is really everything, even in a film like Unstoppable, another straight forward and highly predictable film, it was entertaining because of the chemistry between Washington and Chris Pine. All in all, Safe House is an average film, without much of a supporting cast. It's two hours of chases and gun battles, over the same stuff that all these other films are based on. It's a textbook example of an action movie, with nothing else. It is forgettable and isn't unique in anyway, just the same thing you've seen a million times before.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Rent, don't buy, June 10, 2012
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I'll make this review short and sweet.

Rent it, don't buy. Denzel gives yet another great performance, however, the movie is too stale, although it does contain lots of violence.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as bad as you think, and worse than you want it to be., June 13, 2014
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This review is from: Safe House (Amazon Instant Video)
This is a sometimes slow, always convoluted movie in which Ryan Reynolds is pretty good and Denzel Washington is the same Denzel Washington he plays in ever single movie. The action is not as terrible as some action movies, it avoids the cliche love side-story and "I need to save her" subplot, and is overall smarter than most. If Shooter with Mark Walhberg is the worst of all time (which it is), and The Bourne Identity is the best (which it is), this is somewhere 2/3 up from Shooter and 1/3 away from Bourne.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Always awesome!, May 6, 2014
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This review is from: Safe House (Amazon Instant Video)
Denzel awesome as usual!! Great combination of two leading men! A little reality check in there for all of us.
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Safe House
Safe House by Daniel Espinosa (DVD - 2012)
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