Director: David Koepp
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Dania Ramirez, Sean Kennedy, Kym Perfetto, Anthony Chisholm
Ride like hell
Wilee is the best bicycle messenger boy in New York. He takes pride in riding his bike without having brakes on it or any gears. He knows the streets by mind and can quickly calculate the outcome of any given situation in seconds.
His new assignment is to deliver an envelope with a ticket for a young asian girl named Nima. The ticket is very valuable and is used to illegally bring in Nima’s child into the US. The assignment becomes even tougher when a crooked cop sets his sight on the ticket aswell, since it is the only way he can get out of a gambling debt to the Chinese mafia. Wilee has to deliver the ticket before the time runs out, so Nima can be reunited with her child.
Premium Rush is a popcorn action film with a modest budget of $35 million starring the popular Joseph Gordon-Levitt. It’s perhaps the best bike messenger movie I’ve seen to date, and unless I am forgetting something it is the only one aswell. The film didn’t exactly set the box office on fire and that can’t be surprising to anyone since it is about… biking. I guess some might find it exciting, but it does absolutely nothing for me and I don’t find much thrill in seeing these young ones do tricks or ride the bikes fast without brakes.
The story isn’t very engaging either. I couldn’t help but wonder why Nima didn’t just take a cab to deliver this important ticket herself or why the cop didn’t just flash his badge to Wilee when he first met him to take the ticket from him. Some of the scenes also look like they were made for a video game and while I can see the point of showing how fast Wilee can make decisions in traffic and the Google map type of thing can show the viewer how far it is between the start and end destination, it all becomes a little cartoony in the way it is executed.
Even if the story has holes in it and isn’t very exciting, the film does run at a fast pace and never becomes boring. There are some funny scenes where the cops are unable to get a hold of Wilee because he has such awesome biking skills and the running joke with the bike cop is also quite funny. The acting is also good, I’ve mentioned that the star is Gordon-Levitt and he is solid as Wilee, even if the character is hardly developed.
Michael Shannon is very over-the-top, but also a lot of fun in the role as the crooked detective Bobby Monday. He delivers enough fun to become the standout in this film. Premium Rush is co-written and directed by David Koepp, the director behind Stir of Echoes and Secret Window. I think he should have went even more extreme with the biking if he wanted to impress people. If this was made in France, then I’m sure I would be sitting here and praising the extreme biking skills and stunts of the actors involved.
Premium Rush is a movie with a bad story that are presented very well. It is fast paced and never becomes dull, but it will also not be a film that sits with you for long. I’m sure if someone asks me about Premium Rush ten years from now that I will have no idea what movie they are asking about. It’s decent and never dull, but nothing more.