Movie Reviews

Premium Rush Review: White-Knuckle Thrills

Premium Rush delivers enough high octane thrills to distract you from a formulaic storyline.

The fixie sums up the film perfectly.

“Fixed gear, steel frame, no brakes”

Premium Rush delivers what it promises: high-octane action in the streets of Manhattan through a bare-bones bicycle. Wilee navigates the treacherous landscape of pedestrian and automobile traffic to deliver messages for a mere 80 bucks a day.

But the adrenaline junkie isn’t there for the money. Soon enough he actually gets himself in trouble. This time imminent death is courting him not the other way around. Apart from the normal hazards that come with the job, a crazed corrupt cop (and a persistent one on two wheels) is on his trail.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Michael Shannon square off in a chase-the-bicycle game. They’re given character sketches but both manage to elevate the material. JGL is likable and Shannon is an amusing menace. The rest of the cast do well with what they’re given.

But essentially, that’s all there is to it. There are obstacles thrown in as it makes its predictable turns but they’re all generic – a relationship stuck in second gear, the clueless guy, a douchebag rival, and a sob story. In hindsight, it’s bicycle messengers helping a Chinese mob to smuggle in an immigrant.

But then again, that’s what Premium Rush aims to do  – not the smuggling part – provide two hours of street action from the perspective of the urban rider who has nothing but his wits, reflex, and leg muscles to survive.

Premium Rush

6.5

Premium Rush delivers enough high octane thrills to distract you from a formulaic storyline.

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