Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Throw it into reverse and back away from this nonsensical wreck of a movie

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Ethan Hawke evades a motorcycle gunman with conveniently terrible aim in Getaway.

COURTESY OF WARNER BROS. PICTURE Enlarge Image

Ethan Hawke evades a motorcycle gunman with conveniently terrible aim in Getaway.

Typically, late August is the time of year when studios put out their trash.

Case in point: Getaway.

On screen, the car action is high-speed, but when it comes to smarts, this thing is driving in the slow lane.

This smash-bang nonsense offers up prone-to-slumming actor Ethan Hawke as disgraced race driver Brent Magna. Having chickened out of the professional circuit after a bad crash, Brent has been living in near anonymity in Bulgaria with his lovely wife.

But when his missus is kidnapped, Brent comes home to wrecked Christmas decorations and blood on the floor instead of a welcoming toddy. He gets a call from a mysterious, malevolent Eurosleaze who orders him to go to a parking garage and steal a tricked-out Ford Shelby GT500.

He obliges and uses his driving skills to evade the police. He keeps getting orders to commit reckless acts all over Bulgaria's capital, Sofia, for purposes unknown. When he stops for a breather, he comes close to being carjacked by a pistol-packing punk who goes by "The Kid" in the movie credits.

Played by Selena Gomez, the Kid is a whinging little monster who never tires of telling the driver what a horrible human being he is and how much she hates him. She recalls Kate Capshaw's wheedling damsel-in-distress in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, the most obnoxious action movie heroine in the history of film.

Until now.

The Kid's real name? One can only guess. Kvetchina Kvetcherson?

In any case, it turns out she has (prepare to roll eyes) amazing computer-hacking skills, which she helps Brent employ in a counter-attack on the innumerable bad guys.

If she's so smart, maybe she can explain why, subsequent to the pair launching an attack of Sofia's power plant and knocking out the power to the entire city, all the street lights and storefronts are still clearly on.

Also, how is it so difficult for a race car driver in a souped-up vehicle to take out pursuers on motorcycles. (Sure, they're armed with automatic weapons, but as they never once manage to hit the car's windows, they don't seem that much of a threat.)

Directed by Courtney Solomon (one assumes as an audition for Hot Wheels: the Movie), this is the kind of film where dozens of cars -- mostly police cars -- get smashed up and we're expected to assume there will be no serious casualties.

But as you exit the theatre, prepare to face the truth about this movie's real casualties: the ones that used to reside in your wallet.

randall.king@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 30, 2013 D1

History

Updated on Friday, August 30, 2013 at 6:46 AM CDT: Changes headline, replaces photo

7:10 AM: adds video

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