“Premium Rush” Movie Review
Like to ride bikes? Joseph Gordon-Levitt rides mega-fast for a living in this movie.
By: Lynn Barker
Bike messengers in NYC are crazy, daredevil freaks but it’s their job and delivering a package in time doesn’t usually come with life-threatening chases all over the city!
Wilee (Joseph) watches Vanessa (Dania) fix her bike Courtesy of Sony Pictures
Joseph tears down a New York street Courtesy of Sony Pictures
Joseph with a stunt double Courtesy of Sony Pictures
An injured Wilee (Joseph) with girfriend Vanessa (Dania Ramirez) Courtesy of Sony Pictures
The life of a bike messenger is a physically-demanding and dangerous one. Courtesy of Sony Pictures
Vanessa (Dania Ramirez) has two love interests: Wilee (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and Manny (Wolé Parks). Who should she choose? Courtesy of Sony Pictures
Just Doin’ the Job
Fast as lightning, aggressive bike messenger Wilee (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is the king of his kind. He dodges cars, ticked-off cabbies and pedestrians on his “fixie”, a lightweight, one-gear bike with no brakes! He is also trying to have a relationship with femme bike messenger Vanessa (Dania Ramirez) who is just trying to earn money for school. Wilee’s nutcase love of the rush he gets on the job worries and ticks her off. Rival messenger Manny (Wole’ Parks) has the latest bike and a big drive to hook up with Vanessa.
The “Premium Rush” Package
Vanessa’s roomie Nima has a package (small envelope) for Wilee to deliver across town and she seems really worried about it. We see that cop Bobby Monday (Michael Shannon) is a big gambler and he’s losing big in Chinatown. Wilee has just picked up his package when he’s accosted by Bobby who wants it. Wilee says “Nope”. Once he’s been given a job, he finishes it. The chase is on.
Ride for Your Life!
Wilee is on his delivery when boom! There is cop Bobby trying to run him down with his car! Trying to escape, Wilee tangles with a bike cop who also gives chase. At one point, Wilee is injured, has had it and gives the package back to his dispatcher. Rival Manny ends up with it, taking it to the wrong address as ordered by crooked cop Bobby. Once Wilee learns what is in the package and why it is so important to Nima, he has to get it back from Manny and get it to the right address.
Rivals Race against Time
With the help of Vanessa and all the united bike messengers in town, Wilee manages to race Manny, get the package, avoid the bike cop and get the envelope to the right person in time to make things right for Nima.
So what’s so exciting about bike messengers you say? In this lightning-fast chase movie, a lot! The editing is really good, the riding through traffic looks dangerous, there are some way cool stunts and, once you know why the package needs to get delivered in time, you will root for Wilee and pals to get it there.
Wilee has a special “accident-avoiding” vision that is a riot to see as he has to calculate the different things that could happen if he veers one way or the other. Great actor Michael Shannon is wonderful and sick-funny as the bad guy cop after Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s bike messenger Wilee. Joe does an amazing job and was actually injured in the rough street riding action.
You might get confused with the flashbacks that try to tell the story and the Chinese gambling world that surrounds some of the action isn’t crystal clear but once the bikes are moving, you’ll be caught up in the cool chase action that happens in real time.. that of a 90 minute movie. Overall, Premium Rush is well worth a nite at the Cineplex. 4 stars
PREMIUM RUSH - Official Trailer - In Theaters August 2012