A movie review of “Hot Pursuit”: Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara appear to be having a great time, but the comedy crumbles under the sonic assault of all the overacting and downright yelling. Rating: 2 stars out of 4.

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On your mark. Get set.


Squabble. Bicker. Fuss.

Movie Review ★★  

‘Hot Pursuit,’ with Reese Witherspoon, Sofía Vergara, John Carroll Lynch, Robert Kazinsky. Directed by Anne Fletcher, from a screenplay by David Feeney and John Quaintance. 87 minutes. Rated PG-13 for sexual content, violence, language and some drug material. Several theaters.

Carp. Squawk. Caterwaul.

Ladies! Please! Can’t y’all just get along?

Not in “Hot Pursuit” they can’t. Without near-nonstop high-decibel disputations between Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara, there would be no movie.

That would not necessarily be a bad thing.

Look, they’re a talented duo. And they appear to be having a great time playing an uptight fussbudget cop and a drug dealer’s va-va-voomy Latina widow who looks equally sweltering in a form-fitting white dress or a T-shirt.

And they zing zingers with great gusto.

Vergara: “Look at you, you’re teeny-tiny. You’re like a little dog that I can put in my purse!”

Witherspoon, commenting on Vergara’s look in an orange prison jumpsuit (form-fitting, natch): “You look like a sexy traffic cone.”

Funny stuff, a lot of it. Trouble is, too much of what they say is said AT THE TOP OF THEIR VOICES. That is, when they aren’t outright screaming in A) shock, B) dismay, C) hysteria.

Fact is, they’re badly let down by the script credited to David Feeney and John Quaintance and the direction of Anne Fletcher.

The plot is mind-numbingly simplistic: Witherspoon’s bungling by-the-book officer is to take Vergara’s widow of a drug dealer across Texas to testify in a drug lord’s trial. Cartel hit men and murderous corrupt cops give chase.

On the run, these two argue incessantly. The plot is basically a rickety framework on which the picture hangs endless short jokes made at the “teeny-tiny” cop’s expense, as well as jabs about her lack of sexiness, along with jokes about the widow’s addiction to sparkly high-heel shoes. (She drags a suitcaseful everywhere they go.) Hilarity ensues.

The movie’s makers wish.

Clearly, the idea here was to follow in the flatfootsteps of “The Heat”: Funny ladies do funny cop-movie business. But with all the overacting and downright YELLING, comedy crumbles under the sonic assault.