Getaway

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

Washed up former race driver Brent Magna (Ethan Hawke) arrives home to find his house ransacked and his wife, Leanne, missing. Suddenly, his phone rings. On the other end is a mysterious man known only as The Voice (Jon Voight) who reveals himself as the kidnapper of Magna’s wife. The man tells Magna that he must follow a set of instructions precisely in order to be reunited with his wife. The Voice orders Magna to steal a specially customised Shelby Mustang from a parking garage. The Voice warns Magna that if he does not follow the instructions or is caught, Leanne will die.

Magna sees two police officers chasing him and speeds off. Being a skilled driver, he is able to evade them with ease, eventually setting a trap to cause one to crash into the other. Despite more police cars joining the pursuit, Magna is able to out maneuver them. Some time later, Magna is again contacted by The Voice, who directs him towards his first task. He tells Magna to speed up and take some perilous turns, eventually being forced to crash through a park, ice rink, and shopping center, nearly killing numerous civilians in the process. The Voice calls to congratulate him and tells him to keep moving. Magna is ordered to crash into a water truck and run through a red lighted intersection, causing accidents in his wake. Magna is then ordered to park in a construction zone and await further instructions. While Magna is waiting, a young woman known only as The Kid (Selena Gomez) attempts to steal Magna’s car. The Voice calls and orders Magna to kill The Kid. Magna refuses, and The Voice says that keeping her alive was the right choice, as he will need her help. As Magna and The Kid drive off, with more police in pursuit, she reveals that the Mustang is, in fact, her car, and that she was told, by a police officer, it was stolen. Magna realizes that their meeting was orchestrated by The Voice.

After the Voice assigns Magna another destructive task, The Kid reveals herself as a skilled computer hacker and the daughter of the C.E.O of a large bank. The Voice contacts Magna again and orders him to upload the contents of a USB flash drive into a computer before 11:30 pm. Upon reaching the designated area, a power plant, The Kid attempts to hack the computer in order to contact the police. She appears to have succeeded, only for The Voice to cut her off, revealing that he set up the computer as a trap for her. The plant suddenly overloads and explodes, destroying itself and blacking out a large portion of the city.

The Voice gives Magna his final task: to rob the bank owned by The Kid’s father. The Kid points out that there is no actual money at her father’s bank; it is an investment firm which holds all of its assets on computers. Gradually, the duo realizes that they are not actually committing a heist, but are merely providing a distraction for the police while The Voice executes the real robbery and subsequently frames them for it.

As The Voice’s men begin to commandeer an armoured car carrying sensitive hard drives, Magna surprises and overpowers them, succeeding in taking the drives. Now fleeing from the police and The Voice’s men, Magna calls The Voice and offers to release the hard drives in exchange for his wife. The Voice accepts and directs him to an airplane hangar. While it appears that Leanne is about to be returned, The Kid deduces that The Voice is planning to have them all killed once the deal is done. As Magna, Leanne, and The Kid attempt to escape, the police arrive, and in the ensuing chaos, a man Magna assumes to be The Voice grabs The Kid and drives off with her. Magna leaves Leanne with the police and pursues.

Following a high speed chase, both cars are destroyed, Magna rescues The Kid, and the police arrest the mysterious man. Leanne and Magna are reunited. However, Magna receives a phone call from The Voice, revealing that the man who was busted was no more than a decoy. The Voice thanks Magna for his help and hangs up. It is revealed that The Voice was in fact controlling the entire operation from a bar in the United States. He checks his account balance and walks out of the bar.

REVIEW:

Remember that Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock film, Speed? Well, Getaway seems to be somewhat in that same vein, what with the threat of someone dying if the driving stops, but I don’t believe this is as good as Reeves and Bullock’s, um, vehicle.

What is this about?

When washed-out race car driver Brent Magna’s wife is kidnapped, he partners with a sexy, enigmatic hacker known only as The Kid to track her down. But the figure behind the abduction is calling the shots, and is watching their every move.

What did I like?

Non-stop. I love my action, but most action films that are out there are light on the action and heavy on the useless talking which does nothing but put the audience to sleep. That being said, this flick does not fall into that trap, but does just the opposite. The action scenes take center stage…and they are GLORIOUS!!!! The talking does happen, but it is there just to get the heartbeat back to normal before things take off again. That, my friends, is how you do an action flick!

Property damage. For some reason, people got all up in arms about the property damage in Man of Steel. So much so, that it is rumored the reaction will be part of the plot of Batman vs. Superman. Why was this? I have no idea, but I do appreciate this film’s blatant disregard for cops cars and other property. Seeing vehicular rampage is a good thing once in a while. Sometimes audiences just want to see destruction. Is that so hard for studios and audiences to come together on?

Skeleton crew. We have a car, Ethan Hawke, Selena Gomez, and a mysterious voice. Do we really need anyone else? As it turns out, no we don’t. This small cast accomplishes a more believable story filled with emotion and intrigue than films with giant, overpaid, ensemble casts. Maybe it is best to just keep it simple, stupid.

What didn’t I like?

Who it is? I won’t spoil the identity of the mysterious voice, though his name is on the poster. However, there is something I have a problem with. This guy is revealed at the very end of the film, but that is the first time we see him in the whole film. It makes no sense to have a random guy be the villain, at least without a motive. Now, had he been seen somewhere in the film or turned out to be Selena Gomez’s father, then that would perhaps have made more sense and been a more effective “twist.”

Looks can only take you so far. Selena Gomez is cute, I’ll give you that, but if she wants to ever be a serious actress, she needs to take some lessons. Disney channel movies and shows don’t require actual acting talent because the target audience for those things just care if your character is someone they’d want to hang out with. Welcome to the real world, Selena! Here you must have actual talent and skill to go somewhere.

Hack and slash. I am no computer hacker. Hell, my technological knowledge is extremely limited. I don’t know if it is even possible to hack into a sophisticated infrastructure with an ipad. Kids these days seem to be able to pull off anything, but I just don’t see it as something that can be done. Much like the armored plating on the car, this is just a convenient plot device, I suppose.

Getaway received some really negative reviews and I don’t really understand why. This truly isn’t a bad film and, while it does have some issues, it is a fun flick. It could do without Selena Gomez, perhaps they should have used a more capable actress such as, I don’t know, Demi Lovato. All that said and done, I have to say that I would recommend this, if for no other reason than to see a film than isn’t bogged down with sex, drama, and drugs. Give it a go sometime, why don’t you?

3 1/2 out of 5 stars

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