Review originally written for the Doha Film Institute website.
Film: Premium Rush
Director: David Koepp
Stars: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon and Dania Ramirez
Running Time: 91 min
Genre: Action, Thriller
Law school dropout Wilee (Jospeh Gordon-Levitt) can’t stand suits or sitting behind an office desk. He prefers being a messenger on a cycle roaming the streets of Manhattan in a risky roller coaster, with no brakes and one gear.Nothing stands on his way when it comes to delivering mail, but one specific courier lands him in an endless race against corrupt policeman Bobby Monday (Michael Shannon) who’s trying to get hold of a mysterious delivery. It is a mission that has to be accomplished at any cost, even if it means risking his own life.
This dodgy gambling-addict cop chases Wilee through Manhattan’s every corner.The letter’s contents seem to have a solution to his problems; he needs to grab it before it is delivered even if it requires killing the young rebellious cyclist.
It’s a marathon against time, gravity and the law with its own codes of ethics. What matters is quick and secure delivery. For Wilee it’s not only a job, it’s an adrenalin-filled endeavour that deifies his own skills. Being paid to ride seems the perfect thing to do.
This film starts with a slow-motion shot of Wilee flying after tripping off his bike. The narrative then reverses to the events that took place hours earlier.
With an astonishing sprint and remarkable stunts, the film elevates the chase scenes with a look inside Wilee’s brain. Zooming in and out of Manhattan streets and alleys, he thinks like a navigator and visualises several scenarios within seconds for the best and fastest route. It’s an enjoyable fast-paced thriller that takes our breath away, as these cyclists tirelessly spin their wheels.
‘The Dark Knight Rises’ actor Jospeh-Gordon-Levitt is back on the big screen playing a more grounded action hero in a role that requires more physical strength and endurance.