PREMIUM RUSH (PG-13)

Premium Rush (PG-13)

 

Movie Info

Rating:

Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon, Dania Ramirez, Wolé Parks.

Director: David Koepp.

Screenwriters: David Koepp, John Kamps.

Producer: Gavin Polone.

A Columbia Pictures release. Running time: 91 minutes. Vulgar language, brief violence. Playing at area theaters.


rrodriguez@MiamiHerald.com

The streets of New York City have rarely seemed as dangerous as they do in Premium Rush. A distracted jaywalker, an opening cab door, a gawking tourist — all are potentials for calamity when you’re a bicycle messenger pedaling through Manhattan in order to deliver that crucial letter or document on time. The best moments in director David Koepp’s slight, dull movie are the scenes in which bike messenger Wilee (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) pauses at busy intersections to figure out the path of least obstruction. The film cleverly uses animation to show you the alternate possibilities Wilee considers: If he goes left, he’s going to plow into that baby carriage. If he goes right, he will plow right into that slow-moving bus. Best to go straight and beat that speeding town car to the light. Still risky, but doable.

The bicycling scenes in Premium Rush, most of which are done by actual stuntmen with a minimum of computer-generated trickery, are fun and cool to watch for a while. But that’s all there is to the movie. The plot — a crooked cop, played with a surprising streak of humor by Michael Shannon, is trying to keep Wilee from delivering his latest package — is as layered and complex as a TV ad for detergent. Koepp, who also wrote the script with John Kamps, tries to disguise the slightness of this material by playing with the film’s chronology and stamping the ticking minutes on the screen. Wilee’s name is a clever derivation of Wile E. Coyote, from the Road Runner cartoons. There is also a female bike messenger (Dania Ramirez), but her name is plain old Vanessa. If the filmmakers had been brazen, they would have named her Hot Chick and at least be honest about her reason for being here.

Gordon-Levitt spends almost the entirety of Premium Rush running or bicycling or scrambling: He’s a constant blur of motion, which proves he’s an athletic actor in terrific shape. But if I want to watch extreme bike stunts, I turn on ESPN. If you grew up in the 1980s, you may vaguely remember a movie called Quicksilver, in which Kevin Bacon played a bicycle messenger in San Francisco. You’ve probably forgotten it, though. It’s a safe bet a similar fate awaits Premium Rush.

Read more Reeling with Rene Rodriguez stories from the Miami Herald

  •  
 <span class="cutline_leadin">What’s the secret?</span> Karen Gillan and Brenton Thwaites are a brother and sister trying to solve the mystery of a demonic mirror in ‘Oculus.’

    Oculus (R)

    Mirrors have been as much of a fixture in horror movies as knives and cats that suddenly jump from the shadows. But they’re best in cameos, as in the ending of Dressed to Kill or the bathroom scene in The Shining. Oculus revolves entirely around an ornate mirror that is, what, a gateway to hell? A summoning force for evil spirits? A really ugly piece of furniture from a medieval Pottery Barn?

  •  
Iko Uwais and Cecep Arif Rahman square off in a scene from ‘The Raid 2.’

    The Raid 2 (R)

    Every time you think The Raid 2 can’t possibly top itself, writer-director Gareth Evans goes “Oh, yeah? Watch this.” Most of 2011’s The Raid: Redemption took place inside a tenement raided by a SWAT team to apprehend a mobster and his squad of killers holed up inside. Practically no one survived the movie — the violence was astonishing — but the contained setting and the idea of having events grow hairier for the good guys the higher they went in the building gave the tight 101-minute movie a sense of compressed, relentless action. Now comes The Raid 2 (known as The Raid 2: Bernadal in its native Indonesia), which is far more expansive and complicated, and runs almost 2 ½ hours. Miraculously, the new picture makes the old one feel like Evans was just warming up.

  •  
A sexual addict (Charlotte Gainsbourg) visits a therapist (Jamie Bell) with unorthodox methods to try to help get over her compulsion in ‘Nymphomaniac: Vol. 2’

    NYMPHOMANIAC VOL. 2 (unrated)

    Nymphomaniac Vol. 2 (unrated)

    Things get really kinky in Nymphomaniac Vol. 2, the second chapter in director Lars von Trier’ epic-length saga about a woman who can’t get enough. If you saw Vol. 1, which ended with our perpetually horny heroine Joe (Charlotte Gainsbourg) losing all feeling in her sexual organs, you might be wondering, “How could this movie outdo the first one?” To quote the great Bachman-Turner Overdrive, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category