Directed by: Courtney Solomon
If you are a muscle car aficionado and love films that are long on wicked-fast car chases and bone-crunchingly spectacular pileups then you are probably going to love Getaway which is a gritty, heart-pounding action thriller, where a former race-car driver named Brent Magna (Hawke) is pitted against the clock a mysterious individual who contacts him by phone after kidnapping his wife. This mysterious individual (a barely glimpsed Jon Voight) commands him to abscond with a young woman’s car and drive recklessly around a Bulgarian city crashing into things and endangering the lives of hundreds of people. The disembodied voice tells Magna that if he doesn’t do precisely what he it told to do, the man on the phone will have Magna’s wife killed.
Then, just when things look bad enough, a young woman jumps into the car and holds a gun on Magna. The young woman (Gomez), as it turns out is not only the owner of the high-end Shelby (hey we told you it was a muscle car flick), but is also the daughter of a very powerful banker who controls one of the world’s largest investment banks. Now Magna is forced to involve the girl in his hi-speed escapades, as he takes her on a high-speed race against time, as he speeds through the city. The admittedly bare bones plot is that this is a heist flick, the voice wants to knock over the girl’s dad’s bank and is using the girl and Magna as both bate and a distraction for the cops (who seem to have an endless supply of police cars at the start of the film, but can’t seem to control them very well as most of them wind up as so much scrap metal by the end).
Even with not really much of a plot to, ah, drive the film, it really is quite entertaining and clever in the way it uses what little it has (fast cars, Selena Gomez) to keep your attention as both it and Magna twists and turns and careens through the city. What little we learn we pick up in dribs and drabs. Magna is a former race car driver who apparently lost his nerve and fell off the race circuit, returning to the city of his wife’s birth to lay low and take whatever work he could find. The voice has a boat load of money and has planned this heist out to the last detail, and the girl is a snobby rich kid with a high-end beautifully tricked out Shelby. Still there is more going on here than what we first see. There are a couple of levels to this flick, and they are quite well-played.
While we are not really a hard-core car enthusiast, we still believe that it is a crying shame what they do to that beautiful Shelby.
Robert J. Sodaro has been reviewing films for some 30 years. During that time, his movie reviews and articles have appeared in numerous print publications, as well as on the web. Subscribe to receive regular articles and movie reviews.