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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars YOU'VE DONE A FINE JOB. WE'LL TAKE IT FROM HERE
The action/drama/mystery film opens with a quick character build up of the multifaceted CIA agent Matt Weston (Ryan Reynolds). He operates a safe house with nobody in it. He wants a European field assignment, but lacks department seniority.

The movie switches to Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington) obtaining an embarrassing electronic file from the MI6 in South...
Published 23 months ago by THE MOVIE GUY

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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An action film by the numbers
Denzel Washington plays an ex CIA agent/special forces operative (to be honest, I forget) who gets captured and taken to the (official) CIA's most inept hideout which is promptly overrun by baddies and everyone is killed. Everyone that is, apart from plucky Ryan Reynolds who is basically the CIA's caretaker of the unsafe safe house. He therefore has to rescue Washington...
Published on 20 Nov. 2012 by Albatross


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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An action film by the numbers, 20 Nov. 2012
By 
Albatross "Never argue with idiots" (Suburbia) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Safe House [DVD] (DVD)
Denzel Washington plays an ex CIA agent/special forces operative (to be honest, I forget) who gets captured and taken to the (official) CIA's most inept hideout which is promptly overrun by baddies and everyone is killed. Everyone that is, apart from plucky Ryan Reynolds who is basically the CIA's caretaker of the unsafe safe house. He therefore has to rescue Washington and escort him to safety, all the time being pursued by baddies who can wipe out a professional CIA team in seconds, but can't shoot an untrained agent and his shackled prisoner.

I can suspend my disbelief to accept all that. There's car chases, slick camera work, shoot-outs and punch-up - pretty much everything you'd expect from a modern action film. But it's still only average. The only thing that elevates it from being VERY average is Denzil Washington who, as usual, turns in a pretty decent performance, given what he has to work with. He snarls, charms and punches his way through most situations and Ryan Reynolds seems to have good chemistry with him in his attempts at keeping him both safe and cuffed at the same time.

If anyone else was in the film it would simply be average, but if you like the sound of another car chase-laden action film with a better than average cast, give this one a go. It might be slightly longer than your average action flick, but it's entertaining enough not to bore.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars YOU'VE DONE A FINE JOB. WE'LL TAKE IT FROM HERE, 9 Aug. 2013
This review is from: Safe House [DVD] (DVD)
The action/drama/mystery film opens with a quick character build up of the multifaceted CIA agent Matt Weston (Ryan Reynolds). He operates a safe house with nobody in it. He wants a European field assignment, but lacks department seniority.

The movie switches to Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington) obtaining an embarrassing electronic file from the MI6 in South Africa. "Frost", because he is cold. Denzel uses his expected savvy to escape. He is a rogue super agent who free lances, buying and selling information. In order to escape the bad guys, Tobin surrenders to the CIA. Now the questions are: Was this his original plan? What is on the file?

Tobin is taken to our aforesaid safe house for intense interrogation.

I loved the opening of the interrogation scene. The interrogator says, "I'm here to advise you of your rights. You're being held under national security order 600 which means you have none."

Frost is too important of a person and the top secret safe house comes under attack. The young low level highly trained Matt Weston is now on the run with a man who is a master manipulator of people. To our list of unanswered questions we now add, "Who is the mole?"

Ryan and Washington give us excellent performances. It had elements of the Bourne series that made this story interesting, but it doesn't quite measure up to that film. Cliche ending. I would say if you are a fan of the trilogy, check this one out.

Multiple chase scenes, torture, killings, shoot outs, minor "roof top" jumping, car wreaks without explosions.

1 f-Bomb, no sex, no nudity. Rated R for violence.
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42 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth watching., 9 Jun. 2012
By 
Valerie J. (West Yorks, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Safe House [DVD] (DVD)
Denzil Washington is back on our screens in this action thriller as Tobin Frost a rogue CIA agent on the run. But he's not on the run alone, he's escorted by Matt Weston, the young CIA agent (Ryan Reynolds), who was supposed to keep Frost nicely safe and locked up in a Safe House pending interrogation by the CIA. But that plan went pear-shaped when a bunch of guys from who-knows-where blasted the big steel door off and came charging in, guns blazing and didn't seem to care who they shot as long as it wasn't each other. Weston wants to know why Frost is such hot property, Frost wants to know why he was getting shot at too. We, the audience, know that Frost is carrying a secret, a list of people. If it gets into the wrong hands and becomes public then a lot of the world's secret agencies are going to be very unhappy bunnies. Frost was about to get millions for the sale of the list until other men in black got in his way and he had to turn himself in to stay alive. Can our Denzel really be a baddy? Watch the movie and find out. It certainly looks that way.

Safe House has received mixed reviews from Joe Public but while I accept it isn't a top notch thriller, I enjoyed it. I watched it without expectations which is always a good thing. Bits of it felt like watching a Bourne movie although I didn't think the fight sequences were choreographed half as excitingly, and I didn't think the car chase scenes were half as 'exhilarating' as Jason Bourne driving that mini in Bourne Identity. You have to decide for yourself and I suggest you check out one or two YouTube clips to get a better impression than can be given in written reviews. You must remember the times that someone has told you they hated a movie and you liked it, and vice versa. I think a lot of the disappointment is down to expectations and it seems that a lot of movie watchers nowadays want a lot less drama and a lot more blood with their popcorn. But, personally, I don't enjoy watching a movie without some quiet moments to contrast with the action. Also, with Denzel Washington, the bar is perhaps set unrealistically high.

There are a few very familiar faces in this, apart from Denzel. Ryan Reynolds was in X:Men Origins - Wolverine. Vera Farmiga was in The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and Source Code. Brendan Gleeson was in In Bruges, Breakfast on Pluto and stars as Alastair 'Mad Eye' Moody in some of the Harry Potter movies. The lovely Sam Shepard also has a small role. He's looking a little older nowadays (aren't we all?) One of my favourite films starring him recently is Black Hawk Down (2011).

Oh, and the movie has an excellent soundtrack, I think. You can check it out on iTunes.

Further reviews of mine can be seen at: Movies and Books World, shown on my profile. Thanks for reading this. x
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I'll take it from here...., 14 Mar. 2014
Tobin Frost is a CIA agent who's turned rogue. When he is pursued by men who want to kill him, he goes to the American Consulate where he knows he will be arrested.

When the CIA learns of this, it's decided to bring him to a safe house in Capetown. Shortly after they arrive, the men who chased Frost storm the safe house and kill everyone there.

Matt Weston, the agent who's tasked with looking after the safe house, is the only one left, so he takes Frost and they go on the run. While on the run, Frost tells Weston that the only way those men found the safe house was that someone on the inside told them about it.

Eventually Frost escapes and Weston is told to report to Langley but just as he's about to, he recalls something that Frost did that helps him figure out where he could be going.

But just as he arrives, the men who are after Frost show up but Weston saves him and they head off. But Weston knows that Frost is holding something back....

Denzel Washington is one of those actors that can open a movie regardless of the content. And here is another example. It's your usual story of corruption in the government, and Washington holds the answer.

It's another great performance from the actor, but Frost is a different kind of character to the ones we are used to seeing.

If you mix Harris from Training day and Creasey from Man on Fire, you comes up with the closest answer to Frost. The character on paper is despicable, but once the film gets going, he's not all bad after all, but still carries an evil streak with him.

Reynolds has never been better than his performance here, and proves he has acting chops as well as the looks. The narrative is good, and the action is very loud and up close, but not as irritating as some are saying.

So all in all, it's nothing special, you can pretty much work out who the bad guy is in the first five minute, but thanks to Washington and Reynolds, an average thriller, becomes thrilling.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'SOME GOOD ACTION SEQUENCES ON-BOARD', 29 May 2014
By 
rbmusicman/and/movie-fan' (U.K) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
'Tobin Frost' (Denzel Washington) once a highly regarded 'C.I.A' 'op's' agent has long since betrayed his country and has been on the run for the last ten years.
He's in possesion of a 'file' which could seriously damage many high-flying agents around the globe.
He is chased by a large number of mercanaries and to escape walks into a u.s compound to save himself, he has in effect given himself up for questioning.
'Tobin' is taken to a 'south-african' safe house which soon becomes a target for the heavily armed mercenaries he'd earlier tried to escape from.
Many of the safehouse guards are killed in the attack, the rookie 'Matt Weston'( Ryan Reynolds) is given the job by a dying colleague of getting 'Frost' out of the building safely.
The two become the persued, can the rookie 'housekeeper' keep hold of his charge, who, in truth has years of expierience and will be difficult to handle, esspecially given the numbers in pursuit.
Someone of course gave the mercanaries the information of the original safehouse's location, but who ?, leaving one or two trust issues for 'Matt'
The film did in truth fall a little short of what i had hoped for in the excitement stakes, however, there is a super car chase and several super gunfight and action sequences, making the film worth a spin.S
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars When is a Safe House not a Safe House?, 4 May 2015
By 
Alan Jones (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Safe House [DVD] (DVD)
When Denzel Washington’s ex-CIA agent turned international criminal Tobin Frost surrenders himself to the American consulate in Cape Town you know he must be in big trouble. The Americans are unaware that he is being hunted by a ruthless gang of mercenaries but when their so-called Safe House is attacked and all their agents are killed they soon realise that Tobin must have valuable information. Tobin manages to escape the carnage in the custody of Ryan Reynold’s inexperienced safe house keeper and both are now on the run. What follows is an adrenaline-fuelled action-packed violent odyssey through the city of Cape Town involving car chases, gun battles and brutal hand-to-hand combat. However, despite a notable cast list the screenplay is too formulaic with underdeveloped characters even though the film’s running time is just under two hours. Some of the action sequences suffer from hyper-editing which interrupts the natural flow of the movie which became a became distraction along with an ubiquitous ‘jumpy camera technique’. With the notable acting talent on show this had the potential to be a much better film than it actually is.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The new Jason Bourne?, 13 Jun. 2013
By 
robert stirling (tarn,s.w.france) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Safe House [DVD] (DVD)
The director/producers of this terrific thriller may have wanted to create something akin to the Matt Damon series of Bourne films:They have done a reasonable job.

Much more gritty,realistic violence and CIA insider traitors have the hallmark of [ASIN:B0011LYEDQ The Ultimate Bourne Collection Steel box set [2007] [DVD]]].

In addition we get two action heroes played by Denzil Washington and Ryan Reynolds.The former is rogue whose agenda is to expose covert traitors from all the international espionage agencies and knowing that he'll need funds to disappear safely and securely.

The other is almost a novice but he can sure fight!The bonus footage with the DVD reveals the realism of the fight scenes as well as the expertise used in staging the exciting car chase scenes.Well worth a look.

As an action/thriller this is up there with the best of 'em.And the only thing missing from the cast listing is the name Bourne.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Safe House, 6 Oct. 2014
By 
T. Cosens (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Safe House is a great little action film. Full of tense moments and high octane gun fights. Whilst the story and supposed twists are predictable there is a lot of fun to be had along the way.

Ryan Reynolds tones down his usual goofy style with a surprisingly low key measured performance and give you a character you really want to root for. You feel every punch and blow he takes and look forward to his next blistering encounter.

Denzel Washington is as reliable as ever but may be a little too underperformed. He could have been given a bit more to do and only really had a one major action scene and a couple of little fisticuffs.

The film runs at a swift pace and before you know the credits are rolling. Ideal for a rainy day!
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5.0 out of 5 stars SAFE HOUSE, 31 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Safe House [DVD] (DVD)
Safe House is a 2012 American action thriller film directed by Daniel Espinosa, starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds. It was released on February 10, 2012 in North America by Universal Pictures.[3] Filming took place in Cape Town, South Africa.
Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington), an ex-CIA NOC operative turned international criminal, acquires a data storage device from rogue MI6 agent Alec Wade (Liam Cunningham). Attacked by a team of mercenaries led by Vargas (Fares Fares), Wade is killed and Frost is forced to surrender himself to the American consulate in Cape Town, South Africa.

Frost is transferred to a local safe house maintained by "housekeeper" Matt Weston (Ryan Reynolds), a young agent recently promoted to the boring, low-level CIA posting. Weston watches veteran agent Daniel Kiefer (Robert Patrick) as he begins to interrogate Frost via waterboarding. Vargas and his men attack the safe house, killing Kiefer and his team. Weston escapes, taking Frost as his charge. When Weston makes contact with his superior, David Barlow (Brendan Gleeson), at CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, Catherine Linklater (Vera Farmiga), another CIA operative, orders Weston to lie low and await further instructions.

Weston hides out with Frost and calls his girlfriend Ana Moreau (Nora Arnezeder), a French medical resident who does not know that he works for the CIA, and tells her to leave the house. Barlow later tells Weston to go to Cape Town Stadium to retrieve a GPS device with the location of a nearby safe house. He retrieves the GPS at the stadium, but Frost creates a diversion and gets away by disguising himself as a policeman. Weston, detained by the police, escapes but can't catch Frost. Weston goes to recapture Frost but Frost ambushes and aims a gun at him, then says bluntly "I only kill professionals" and bursts Weston's eardrum by shooting into the wall right next to him before leaving the area.

Weston is ordered to visit the nearest American embassy for debriefing. Instead he meets with Ana and reveals that he is a CIA agent. He tells her to return to Paris for her safety. Weston tracks Frost to a shantytown in Langa, where Frost is meeting Carlos Villar (Rubén Blades), an old contact and document forger. Vargas attacks again, killing Villar along with his wife, but Frost eludes him and his men with Weston's help. Weston subsequently learns that Vargas is actually working for the CIA, which is seeking to retrieve the storage device Frost received from Wade. The device is Israeli intelligence, revealed to contain details of corrupt officials and secret money transfers involving American CIA, British MI6, and other intelligence agencies; Weston recognizes the reference to the Mossad because the CIA accused Frost of selling secrets to them before he became a rogue agent. Weston's own superiors may be implicated. Frost is taken to the new safe house by Weston, where Weston is attacked by the housekeeper, Keller (Joel Kinnaman).

After a great deal of struggling, Weston kills Keller but is badly wounded in the fight. Frost leaves Weston who then passes out from the wounds sustained fighting Keller. Meanwhile, Linklater has arrived in South Africa with Barlow to collect Frost and Weston from the safe house, but on the way is shot and killed by Barlow, who goes to the safe house and reveals that he is Vargas's employer. He confirms that the file contains incriminating evidence against him, and encourages Weston to lie about what has happened. Frost returns to rescue Weston by killing Vargas and his men but is shot by Barlow. Weston then shoots Barlow in the chest, killing him. Frost gives Weston the file and tells Weston he is better than him before he dies from his injuries.

Back in the United States, Weston meets with CIA Deputy Director Harlan Whitford (Sam Shepard), who informs Weston that unflattering facts about the CIA must be removed from his report, but that he will be promoted. He asks Weston about the file's location but Weston denies having been told about it by Frost. Whitford states that whoever has those files will have many enemies. Weston leaves, then leaks the files to the media, incriminating personnel from many intelligence agencies, including Whitford. Later on, Weston sees Ana across a street in Paris, France. She reads a note passed to her from him, looks up at Weston, and they both make eye contact and she smiles before Weston walks away.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Not so safe house, 18 Jun. 2012
By 
Jules (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Safe House [DVD] (DVD)
Matt Weston (Reynolds) is the newbie CIA operative in a mundane job of maintaining a safe house in Cape town, South Africa. Begging his boss David Barlow (Gleeson) for a new assignment. His prayers maybe answered, as across town something is brewing, rogue CIA agent Tobin Frost (Washington) is acquiring a top secret file from a British Mi6 man, but turns out he isn't the only one wanting the file, as the meeting is crashed & bullets start flying. Frost has no chance of escape & so reluctantly hands himself into the US embassy, where upon he is escorted by a team led by Daniel Kiefer (Patrick) to Weston. Interrogation is soon interrupted though, as the assailants find them, and leaves Weston & Frost on the run together.

Overall this is a decent action movie, the story is somewhat formulaic, but acts as a good enough excuse for some action. And those action sequences will keep you entertained for the majority of the almost 2 hour run time, as they slip in & out between the stories snippets of progression. With a mixture of car chases, cat & mouse shootouts & hand to hand combat. Yet these come across as the more serious moments of the film, each scene has you sit up & take notice as to where those bullets are flying or who is gaining the advantage in a fight. The musical score complimented the action really well IMO. While the backdrop of South Africa was well used, a mixture of city, shanties & outback locals.

Ryan Reynolds (The Proposal) usually known for his romantic comedies & moonlighting in action films, does a convincing job as the underestimated & out of his depth CIA agent. While Denzel Washington (Training Day) brings his usual huge presence to the screen, as the confident & experienced rogue agent, who dislikes being taken prisoner by such an inexperienced opponent. The chemistry between the leads is good, it was like watching Training Day again in a way, but with Reynolds in place of Ethan Hawke. The rest of the cast were of good stock too, with Brendan Gleeson (In Bruges) , Vera Farmiga (Source Code) , Sam Shepard (The Right Stuff) & Robert Patrick (Terminator 2) adding backbone to the film.

In conclusion, Safe House is a good action film with some style, the actors do a good job, but the story is by the numbers & doesn't give the action scenes as much justice as they deserved. Recommended.
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