Valdosta Daily Times

September 9, 2013

Get away, far away, from ‘Getaway’

Adann-Kennn Alexxandar
The Valdosta Daily Times

VALDOSTA — “Getaway” (Action/Crime: 1 hour, 30 minutes)

Starring: Ethan Hawke, Selena Gomez and Jon Voight

Director: Courtney Solomon

Rated: PG-13 (Violence and strong language)

Movie Review: “Getaway” has plenty octane energy but little of anything else. It features former racecar driver Brent Magna (Hawke). He must complete a number of tasks given to him by a mysterious voice (Voight) via cellular phone, or Magna’s abducted wife will die. Magna steals, a custom Shelby Super Snake Mustang. The car’s owner, a young woman (Gomez), inadvertently tries to intervene and ends up coming along for the ride. Magna and the young woman find themselves forced to complete the high-speed tasks to save Magna’s wife. 

You know you are watching a bad film when a character, Gomez’s role in the case, is referred to as “the kid,” when the film consists of mainly three players.

At the end, the audience will still not know her name. The character’s name is unimportant because this action-oriented piece is regrettable, forgettable material.        

Hawke looks the part, and Gomez is so-so. He drives. She screams. Audiences should drive away. The problem is neither delivers the necessary talents to sustain this wayward production. Screenplay writers Sean Finegan and Gregg Maxwell Parker offer them little to work with in this muddle.

The script consists mostly of car chases and automobile wrecks. Apparently, more police cars wreck here than any other movie in past years. This action was the only way these cars could escape this terrible script.

The plot crashes too, more than the automobiles. Scenes make no sense. The script has scenes haphazardly thrown together to form a plot as thin as a sheet of paper. The cast’s actions make no sense. People repeatedly do dumb actions throughout this film that is a modern-day version of television’s “The Dukes of Hazzard,” except “Hazzard” makes more sense.

Ultimately, the ending is as goofy and nonsensical as every thing before it is. The conclusion is where the film crashes the most. What little made sense becomes more unresolved.

Grade: F (Get away from this.)


“One Direction: This is Us” (Documentary/Music: 1 hour, 32 minutes)

Starring: Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson

Director: Morgan Spurlock

Rated: PG (Language)

Movie Review: This documentary follows the musical activities of Harry, Zayn, Niall, Liam, and Louis. The guys are a very popular boy band that rose to fame after their appearance on British television’s “The X-Factor” in 2010. The young men have since skyrocketed to fame and attract very large crowds of mainly young teenage women. For a good reason: these guys are intriguing, handsome and talented performers.

The film spends much of its time showing the guys being young, often behaving like boys. They are pranksters, and they don’t mind showing their adolescent humor. Off stage, life never appears dull when these young men are together. Harry Styles steals the show, of course. He likes the cameras, and the people controlling them apparently like him. He is the more energetic and comical of the band’s members.

Besides the band, we also see how the young men interact with their families and fans. Their interaction with family is light, but moments captured with fans are imaginatively comical. Some of the better moments are when the One Direction members wear disguises. Then, they interact with unknowing fans to get reactions. Elements of the pranks are very similar to MTV’s “Jack-Ass” antics. These bits are comically entertaining. They make this documentary a better entertainment.

A carefully planned piece of publicity is one manner to describe this movie. This film gives audiences a sugar-coated view of five men achieving fame. Viewers mainly see the happy moments, as if this is all that exists. This is not bad because this film’s purpose to give fans more access to the five young men, attract more fans and generate controlled publicity for One Direction.

Directed by Spurlock (“Super Size Me,” 2004), enjoyable is the appropriate manner to describe this production, even if one is not a fan. It has something for various audiences. Five talented, handsome guys with tattoos, shirtless often and sometimes in their undies should provide plenty thrills for their fans. The humorous pranks and their boyish antics help, if one wants more.    

Grade: B (The direction is good.)