Getaway is brought to you by Ford, hence the consistent shots of the Shelby Cobra logo on the film’s main vehicle. This film is also brought to you Courtney Solomon, the director of the critically acclaimed film “Dungeons & Dragons”! Guest appearances include the brilliant Ethan Hawke from the perfect “Before” series and Disney Star gone wild, Selena Gomez (Spring Breakers)!
Remember when you were younger and you thought that cars and explosions were some of the coolest things? Then, did you imagine an awesome actor and actress doing some stunts in these cars? Well, Getaway has all of those elements and it’s still awful! I mean, it is really, really bad! The dialog is something out of a preteens head and every other shot in the film is a car crashing in a spectacular fashion. That’s literally it. The motive behind all these car shenanigans is the weakest in history and every actor in this film (I’m looking at you Ethan and Selena) is severely miscast and doesn’t have any reason to be there.
We start Getaway with Brent Magna (Ethan Hawke) cruising around Bulgaria (naturally) in a Shelby Super Snake Mustang that has been armored, bugged and covered with surveillance cameras. As he drives, we get Black and White flashbacks to Magna entering his house on Christmas morning to find his house destroyed and his wife missing. A phone rings and a mysterious voice (John Voight) tells Magna what he needs to do in order to see his wife again. If you look at the story from this one scene, it has potential to be an okay film. However, the mysterious voice has a bunch or ridiculous and childish tasks for Magna to achieve in his car, which make this film utterly awful.
One of the first things that Magna must do is wreak havoc in a park, by driving into every breakable object and eventually onto an ice rink. It was fun when I first did all that in Grand Theft Auto, but at least that video game is fun. Magna just drives into everything and honks and yells at people as he does so. He gets a bit sassy with the mysterious voice, but he is quickly put in his place when he’s told that his wife will killed shortly. After his talking-to, Magna is told to drive to a specified location and await further instructions. It’s there, that he meets the street thug known as, THE KID (Selena Gomez).
Her name is the kid… SHE DOESN’T HAVE A NAME! It’s just silly. Anyways, The Kid tries to car-jack Magna with a gun, but he quickly disarms her and is faced with a moral decision. The voice tells Magna to kill The Kid, or else his wife will die. Magna is a lover, not a fighter, and can’t go through with killing The Kid. Inevitably, this was the voice’s plan all along (haha… good one). It turns out that The Kid is the owner of the Shelby Super Snake Mustang (yes, they make it very clear that that’s what the car is called) and she is very upset by all of the modifications made to it. To express her distaste with the new redesign, she proceeds to whine and swear at Magna, just as a little boy would whine when he doesn’t get his way.
The rest of the film follows the incessant caterwauling (thank Django for that word) of The Kid as Magna drives rather well, but ultimately is responsible for the destruction of at least a few dozens police cars. It’s revealed that The Kid should actually be named “The Whiz Kid”, due to her extensive knowledge of computers and how almost anything technological works. Of course she hates school, though. As any genius must. Of course Magna used to be a wheelman, as he’s used to getting away form tricky scenarios in a car. Of course the two figure out the voice’s master plan and how to defeat him. Thank you movie tropes.
What we get, if anything, out of Getaway is that if you drive into another car, that other car will be hurdled into mid air and will crash into some object that just so happens to be there. Hell, you might even get an explosion out of it! I mean, if destroying part of a computer in a power plant can blow up the entire plant, anything can blow up! Also, never steal a tricked out car, because it probably belongs to the genius daughter of wealthy businessman. Those are the lessons that I took out of Getaway.
As I mentioned earlier, no in this cast has any reason to be there. Ethan Hawke got a pass for The Purge, as it wasn’t a complete failure, but he was also in one of the best movies of the year, Before Midnight! He gave another incredible performance for the series and helped write one of the best scripts of the year. Now, he’s muttering stupid dialog and driving a car so that he can get his wife back… As for Selena Gomez, she’s hot off of the success of Spring Breakers! She was great in the film and things were looking up for her! Now she’s a nameless, brainy teenager who whines and complains all the time. She’s a wizard, so if she could just undo all of this, that would be great. (Don’t forget that Jon Voight is the bad guy, but his voice is nothing like the voice we hear. It’s very important that he is the bad guy)
In the end, Getaway is 90 minutes of mindless explosions, horrible dialog and awful acting (It’s not their faults… Well not entirely). This movie may have fared better if it had made for straight to video and had Nicolas Cage as the lead, but alas, we get Ethan Hawke and Selena Gomez disgracing all the progress they made this year. This film isn’t worth the $8 to go see it in the theaters. Instead, use that $8 to rent Before Sunrise and Before Sunset so that you can preserve Ethan Hawke as an amazing actor whom makes amazing choices, in your head.