Getaway (2013)

<strong class="MovieTitle">Getaway</strong> (2013)

(On Cable TV, June 2014) As a fan of car-chase movies, I took Getaway‘s horrible reviews with a spoonful of salt: Most B-grade action films get low grades anyway, and as we know that it’s really the action sequences that make or break these films, right? Well, it turns out that the reviewers completely understood the film: Getaway is a frustrating waste of money and talent, in the service of incompetent directing by Courtney Solomon (of Dungeons and Dragons infamy) and a near-worthless script. There’s a small comfort to find out that the film doesn’t take a long time before degenerating into nonsense: From the incoherent opening credit sequence alone, it’s obvious that this film will really not be any good. A mess of random camera angles edited with a blender, Getaway makes a blurry mush of its action sequences, wasting several dozen cars in the process: the action scenes flash on-screen with no sense of geography, continuity or excitement. (It’s not a surprise if the film’s best shot, a lengthy uninterrupted driving shot reminiscent of C’était un rendez-vous, temporarily dispenses with the two-cuts-a-second aesthetics) If the incomprehensible action is the worst of Getaway‘s, problems, don’t think it gets off any easier on the rest: Selena Gomez is completely miscast as kind of a shrill and rebellious hacker/car enthusiast: she has the aggressiveness of a kitten, and Getaway (unlike Spring Breakers) can’t even claim to have her turning against type. Ethan Hawke seems out of place here, turning the wheel and looking intensely in front of him as Jon Voigt’s voice barks “Do it now!” over and over again. There’s a smidgen of interest in setting the action in Sofia, but none of it goes anywhere as the film almost trips upon itself in trying to justify why an all-American cast should be involved. All it does in underscore how unredeemable Getaway becomes. Not even a half-clever final coda can save the film. It is awful even by the generous standards of car movies, and even enthusiasts are advised to watch something else.

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