- Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon
- Summary: Dodging speeding cars, crazed cabbies, open doors, and eight million cranky pedestrians is all in a day’s work for Wilee, the best of New York's agile and aggressive bicycle messengers. It takes a special breed to ride the fixie – super lightweight, single-gear bikes with no brakes and rideriders who are equal part skilled cyclists and suicidal nutcases who risk becoming a smear on the pavement every time they head into traffic. But a guy who’s used to putting his life on the line is about to get more than even he is used to when his last envelope of the day – a routine “premium rush” run – turns into a life or death chase through the streets of Manhattan. (Columbia Pictures)… Expand
- Director: David Koepp
- Genre(s): Action, Thriller
- More Details and Credits »
90Stuffed with zingers and zippy stunts, it comes with pretty young things of all hues and hair types - few prettier than its lead, Joseph Gordon-Levitt - and start-to-finish clever special effects, none more clever or special than Michael Shannon.
80There is a lot of silly bike-is-life philosophy, including Wilee's personal credo of "Fixed gear, steel frame, no brakes," none of which I can speak to because I don't care a tinker's damn about bikes, but I do have an abiding fondness for compact and coherent action movies, and this is surely one.
25The best moments in director David Koepp's slight, dull movie are the scenes in which bike messenger Wilee pauses at busy intersections to figure out the path of least obstruction.
8Premium Rush delivers on the promise of its title. Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars as a daring NYC bike messenger. Apparently there is no end to the risks bike messengers take. Some of the film's best sequences elaborate on various possibilities that could end in disaster. Michael Shannon plays a hapless cop whose gambling habits have gotten him into trouble with the wrong people. His performance is another of the movie's numerous highlights. Gordon-Levitt receives an envelope, the contents of which could help Shannon. Premium Rush moves back and forward in time and all across NYC, following different characters and providing the audience with the central scenario before fleshing out the details. This approach works decidedly better than more straightforward storytelling. Writer/director David Koepp capably maintains tension, while his and John Kamps's script successfully injects humor into various situations. The characters are well defined and have plausible motivations. Ultimately Premium Rush is fairly simple, but it offers enough innovation and personality to rise above standard genre fare. Those looking for a good time would do well to see it.… Collapse
Be careful on the streets of New York. You'll find mayhem, close-calls, accidents, rude behavior, violence, and danger; and that's just from the bicycle messengers.
Premium Rush is the story of one of those messengers (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who must make an important and urgent delivery through Manhattan rush-hour traffic. Gordon-Levitt's character, Wilee, is such a maniac that he rides a bike without brakes, derailleur gears or de rigueur rails.
Joining Wilee on this thrill ride are Manny (Wolé Parks) and Vanessa (Dania Ramirez). I don't know if this film is supposed to make us feel some sympathy for the plight of the downtrodden bicycle messenger, but I personally was rooting for the bad cop (Michael Shannon) to haul their hazardous hineys to the hoosegow for being the dangerous road jerks that they are.
The acting is uneven at best. Ramirez must have gone to the Scowling-Is-Acting School for Young Thespians. Not that she can't make a career out of a scowl. Bruce Willis has been a show-biz success for nearly 30 years with no discernible asset other than a smirk. Shannon's acting isn't much better. I've enjoyed his previous work in Boardwalk Empire and the excellent Before the Devil Knows You're Dead. Here, however, he vacillates between a tough-as-nails Cagney-like bad guy to an exasperated high-pitched whining comic-relief character reminiscent of Curly Howard.
Most of the film's 90 minutes, is spent wheeling on bicycles through traffic. I found it rather tiresome (ha ha! get it? tiresome... tire... you know... bicycle... forget it).
If it's bicycles and a thrilling chase that you have a craving for, watch two movies Breaking Away and Bullitt. You'll get the fix you need and see two infinitely better films in the process.… Expand
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