No Good Deed (2014) exec produced and starring a compelling Taraji P. Henson and a menacing Idris Elba is a great popcorn movie. If critics can give it up to Liam Neeson as an over 50 year old action stud in Taken (2008), then Henson and Elba deserve some props. The plot is rather straightforward with Colin (Elba) as a serial killer bent on abusing and murdering women—a hot topic in pop culture. He escapes from prison following a failed parole hearing, by killing an officer en route to jail. An accident in a stolen car leads him to Terri’s (Henson) idyllic, suburban home while her husband is out of town. Terri, now a stay-at-home mom of two, also happens to be a former prosecutor with a focus on violence against women. Through subtle manipulation, Colin makes his way into Terri’s home pretending to be a neighbor in need of assistance. The film has a familiar formula: relatively cheaply made at $13.2 million – cheaper than a handful of popular ‘exploitation’ films of recent years like Taken (2008), Columbiana (2011), and Contraband (2012), buttressed by some star power, a short running time, suspense, adventure, and always family oriented. These kinds of films are typically winners because they don’t pretend to be overly realistic but place themselves in a realm we can all relate to—doing whatever it takes for the people we love. There’s always a payoff—no super intellectual twists, but a fair amount of wit and intrigue by big name actors willing to take a risk and have fun. No Good Deed is also rather entertaining because it stars TWO attractive, skilled, and brown-skinned actors, in roles that are not always awarded the black thespians. Clearly Elba and Henson are capable of meatier roles, but even still what they do with this film is interesting. In fact, I believe Henson and Elba approached the project like two stage actors in a tense, interpersonal scene, constantly riffing off of one another. As much as I disliked Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) that needed $170,000,000 to get off the ground, No Good Deed is at least as entertaining and doesn’t pretend to be about saving the galaxy instead of making a buck.