Most movies promise more than they deliver. But the charm of David Koepp's nimble thriller is that it does exactly what it sets out to. Anyone expecting Inception will be disappointed, but think of it as a candy-coated Crank for kids, and it whizzes giddily by. More
Writer/director David Koepp made his name scribing whip-smart blockbusters in the Mission: Impossible vein, and Premium Rush has all the hallmarks of a screenwriter's flick. The characters' motivations are crystal clear throughout, the exposition is spat out fast (often on hands-free, while speeding through traffic), and the audience is left mentally unencumbered by anything but the onscreen action.
As likeably efficient as the film itself, Joseph Gordon-Levett plays cycle courier Wilee, who rides without brakes, gears or concern for life/limb. He's asked to deliver a mysterious package by his girlfriend Dania Ramirez's room-mate, Jamie Chung, but soon falls afoul of Michael Shannon's apoplectic cop, who'll stop at nothing to stop him. And that, refreshingly, is it.
During the thrilling chase scenes that follow, Wilee tears across Manhattan, his increasingly limited choices dramatised for the audience with a series of first-person fight-or-flight decisions. Besides working brilliantly on a visceral level, this device mimics the screenwriter's mission: to steer the shortest possible path through the most exciting obstacles - something Koepp does with flair.
“The hesitations will kill you,” believes Wilee, but it may as well be his creator speaking, for this is a film that only falters when it pauses, particularly for the female characters. The rest of the ride, the fearless stunts and merciless pace keep us, like Willee, eternally in the moment where the only things that matter are the destination and the joy of getting there. Hide