Movie review: Car chase flick “Getaway” a lemon

By Columbus Alive
From the August 29, 2013 edition

If you like car crashes and bizarre casting pairings, have I got a movie for you! If you like good movies, yeah, not so much.

The Ethan Hawke-Selena Gomez vehicle (yes, you read that correctly) doesn’t even pass the fun test as it drive full-throttle into its ridiculous premise.

Brent Magna (Hawke) is a former race-car driver who awakens one morning to find his lovely wife has been kidnapped. He receives instructions to steal a souped-up Shelby from a nearby parking garage and drive. Fast.

As Brent is racing from the cops to save his wife’s life, he gets a surprise passenger (Gomez). The unlikely pair must unite against the mysterious voice on the phone.

For 90 minutes, “Getway” alternates between bursts of a) high-speed car chase with lots of crashes and b) ridiculous exposition to advance a not-as-clever-as-it-thinks plot.

Hawke has the privilege of being in both one of the best films of the year (“Before Midnight”) and one of the worst. One can’t help but wonder if he chooses his projects with a Magic 8-Ball.

Gomez is unintentionally funny as she tries to go tough-girl hacker, a la Lisbeth Salander. I know she’s trying to grow out of the Disney star mold, but as this week’s “Twerk Heard ’Round the World” has proved, that’s a tricky affair. “Spring Breakers” was a better move.

The stunt work is fun, and the disconnect between it and the actors means this film could actually probably be remade with other leads for foreign markets. (You’re welcome, Warner Bros.)

I wasn’t expecting something on par with “Drive,” but we could have had some ridiculous fun like Nic Cage had in “Drive Angry.” “Getway” just stalls and sputters.