Normally I try to maintain a neutral bias before I see every movie, as you know. But sometimes I get so pumped up on an idea and on how awesome a movie can be, if the movie doesn’t deliver, then I might resent the movie.
And well, that might have happened for Premium Rush. I was stoked for this movie. Cool bike racing against the time, maybe terrorists, who knows?! Joseph Gordon-Levitt generally delivers. This will be a great movie if it is real time, like 24 and Phone Booth. The previews almost make it seem that way, I mean jeez, they even say he only has 90 minutes to get the task done. That’s like a movie length!
Oh no JGL! Watch out! That Taxi is coming right for you!
Well this movie is not set in real time. Insert instant disappointment. They do show the clock an awful lot. But also flip back and forth to before the movie started to set up some plot. Eh, flashbacks, how lazy.
Wilee (JGL. Yes like the Coyote. Might be an reference or something) is a bike courier in the big NYC. He actually finished law school, but doesn’t want to take the bar, or else he might be working in an office with all of those squares. How scary!
Know what isn’t scary? Riding an old bike at high speeds, no gears or breaks, around NYC. Always moving, always being an asshole. That’s the life!
He decides to take a big ticket item to pay some bills, a long delivery from his old school by 7pm, and hey, it is even his friend Nima (Jaime Chung) who hooks him up! But he immediately runs into problems when some random suit (Michael Shannon) stops him on his bike, demanding the envelope, and willing to give chase. Hot damn, crazy people!
While this is going on, he is also vying for the attention of his ex(?) Vanessa (Dania Ramirez) who actually wants to stop riding bikes, dealing with an asshole work mate Manny (Wole Parks), and trying to convince his manager Raj (Aasif Mandvi) that something bad is happening.
So step 2 was you putting your hands upon my hip? Then you dip, I dip, we dip?
Gah. Really though. This movie might have been killer if it was real time. I can’t get over that fact. Sure its harder to make, but come on. Come. On.
I did see that JGL actually got injured in the shoot. Real bike riding can do that to you with all those cars around. At least there was passion.
Personally I found the character to be extremely unlikeable. When I called him an asshole? That wasn’t just me bullshitting. He actually is one. He will go back and forth in front of cars, causing them to stop and swerve, almost hit lots of people, no care in the world. That’s just a dick move, man.
After he starts getting chased, he causes a small accident which causes a bike cop to chase him. Despite the fact that his chaser is gone and is now a cop, he still doesn’t stop. Not even when it is just easy enough to stop, and get help from the mad man.
The rest of the plot? I guess it is plausible. But a lot of the coincidences to make it worked bugged me, there were far too many. Not to mention they also gave JGL some sort of spider sense to be able to pick the right path that didn’t come up in injury (although I will admit it was funny to see the “wrong” path choices. Some crazy crashes).
Basically, the TL;DR version of this review is my friends intuitions were correct.
1 out of 4.