Ethan Hawke and Selena Gomez make for one sorry movie duo in Getaway, a sure sign that the summer movie season is coming to an end. Studios have commenced dumping their crap.
Hawke plays Brent, a former race car driver who comes home to find his Christmas tree in disarray and his wife gone. He gets a call from Jon Voight's ugly mouth (the only part of the actor we see for most of the movie) to get in a crazy awesome car in the parking garage and start taking his orders. If not, the wife gets it.
So Brent does what he's told and starts driving like a maniac in a tripped-out Mustang rigged with many cameras. After successfully driving through a crowded park without killing anybody (this is a PG-13 movie after all), the horribly annoying Selena Gomez winds up in his car as a tough girl (she wears a baseball cap and a hoodie) who wants her car back. I'm of the opinion that this movie might've been better had Hawke been required to drive solo.
Let's get something straight: there's no reason to call this movie Getaway. A getaway implies that an actual heist or something has occurred and somebody is trying to "get away" in the car. This movie should be called something like Driving Around All Crazy Because Jon Voight Is Telling Me To or Driving Toward an Unknown Whatever, a Slave to Jon Voight's Mouth or simply Absolutely Nothing to Do With Getting Away.
I have said it before, and I will say it again: Ethan Hawke always does a good job when he's required to look and act scared. I just like it when he's all paranoiac and strange in films like Training Day and Before the Devil Knows You're Dead. He is OK in this movie, as he was in The Purge, with both requiring him to be freaked out. Sadly, these two films also hold the dubious distinction of being two of the year's worst films.
As for Gomez, she is also in two of the year's worst films due to her presence in this one and the execrable Spring Breakers. Unlike Hawke, she does not do a decent job of playing freaked out.
Gomez's dialogue in this film consists of repeated usage of words like "Look out!" "I hate you!" "We're going to die!" and "I like bacon and gummi bears!" Actually, she never says that last one, but if she had, that would've been refreshing and different.
Even though the Voight character has required Hawke to keep the Gomez character in the car, she does get many legitimate opportunities to leave. She always comes back, and when Hawke asks her why, her reply is something along the lines of "Because I want to." That's deep man ... real deep.
This is essentially 90 minutes of a car driving real fast with some rather upset people inside, with people dodging the car like a big-budget version of that videogame "Crazy Taxi," and Jon Voight's gross, unshaven face. I'm starting to miss Vin Diesel acting all serious and mopey in the Fast and Furious films. The new Riddick movie will come out next week, so I guess I'll get my fix.
On paper, I suppose a 90-minute car chase had some appeal. People love cars, and people love car chases even more, so let's just do that for the entire film. Director Courtney Solomon has a way of making a car chase tedious after about three minutes. Ninety minutes feels like your least favorite semester from your college years (you know, the one where you got the flu during midterms) multiplied five times.
The film is left open-ended for a sequel, a sequel where we would be likely to see the return of all parties. All parties need to get any notion of a sequel out of their minds. They need to go play golf, or read some poetry or something. As far as starring in any other films called Getaway that have nothing to do with actually getting away, I'm thinking the world will be OK if the car stops here.