By Jay Riotta
Let me just start by saying I am not an “insider.” I don’t know how it “goes down” in Hollywood. But really, I know what I like, and I liked Observe and Report, and I’ll tell you why.
Two words: Ray Liotta.
Sure, Seth Rogen is the star, and he handles his role well. But you have to understand something, there’s a reason why the people behind the scenes made him a “Mall Cop” and made Ray Liotta a real-honest-to-goodness police detective. That’s the sort of level these guys are on. Ray Liotta is making his comeback in a bigger than Mickey Rourke way, and I am glad. I knew he’d be good after Goodfellas – I said to myself, “This guy Ray Liotta has it made in the shade!”
Of course, I’m not going to pretend I know how the movie business works. I know that Seth Rogen has become quite the young star – and good for him. It’s not easy for fat, doofy looking guys to hold star power the likes of dashing Ray Liotta. And, I won’t argue that the movie the guys in Hollywood wanted to make was one all about the Ronny the Mall Cop fighting his demons, trying to take down a serial flasher. But, let me tell you folks, if I made that picture, I would have made a nice police procedural about how Detective Harrison (Ray Liotta) pushes paperwork and nabs the flasher and all the other ne’er-do-wells over at the Shopland.
But, I didn’t get to have my say in the making of this picture. As I said earlier, I’m not an insider. What I did really like was the scene where Ray Liotta breaks it down for Seth Rogen about how he should let him do his job. That was fine acting, and something I am expecting to see a lot more of in Ray Liotta’s future. This is just the tip of the iceberg. This performance just bought Ray back a one-way ticket on the high-speed train to Leading Mansville – mark my words now; they’ll pull out all the stops for this first class passenger. He may not have gotten the screen-time to completely showcase his Oscar-worthy talent in this movie, but it would be a damn shame if he wasn’t held in high regard by the producers of Hollywood.
Ray continues to prove he’s a class act, and willing even to take second fiddle to a guy like Seth Rogen, who makes me laugh (don’t get me wrong).
So go see Observe and Report. And tell ‘em Jay Riotta sent you.
Jay is a movie fan from Newark, New Jersey. He does not live in Hollywood.