Review by Ian Keogh
Alex Martin is an actor whose career is heading downhill until he happens to be in the right place at the right time to rescue a woman whose car drives through a crash barrier. The resulting press shoots his profile off the scale and suddenly his agency want to talk with him again. Mateus Santolouco’s sample art shows the effort now made to ensure he lives up to the public perception of him, and it’s not long before he’s landed a very promotable action hero role. The only short term problem is that someone’s also trying to kill Alex.
A comedy thriller touch is applied to Andrew Cosby and Kevin French’s script, and when Rachel Dodd, the cover girl of the title, is introduced, Alex has been established as a clueless goon. Rachel is a cover girl in the sense that she’s there to provide cover for Alex, the pretence being she’s his girlfriend, and therefore has a reason to be seen out with him all the time. In reality she’s there to protect him, so she’s quite capable of taking care of herself and Alex, and should the problem be bigger than expected there’s Dwight, her covert back-up.
Cosby and French have Hollywood experience that gives a plausibility to their behind the scenes look at the movie business, which is completely plastic and false, with not a word of sincerity to be located. It’s funny, with the on-camera interviews a highlight. So, the set-up is viable and the lines are good, but Santoluoco’s art prevents Cover Girl reaching its potential. If he were acting, he’d be wooden. It’s not that there’s anything missing in telling the story, just that it’s told in the most basic way with poor sense of scale and little imagination, and so much is unconvincing. His cars for a start, and there are some really dodgy looking faces.
It’s predictable from early on that Alex’s life is going to turn into an action movie, but that’s joyously handled. If you can put up with the art, this is fast-moving and funny.