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Premium Rush

Year: 2012
Studio: Columbia
Director: David Koepp
Writer: David Koepp
Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon, Jamie Chung

I found the whole thing kind of infantile. It reminded me of that atrocious Queen Latifah and Jimmy Fallon vehicle Taxi, and not just because it dealt with driving dangerously around New York, but because of the low stakes and generally kids' movie tone.

As an action movie, the wind rushing past in the many bicycle chase scenes is all hot air, and the underlying story doesn't have enough sense of threat or danger to be effective – even with creepy Michael Shannon in the villain role.

It'll be remembered as a barely-seen blip on Joseph Gordon Levitt's rise to A-list status. He plays a bike courier in New York who picks up a delivery laden with a human trafficking backstory that's too contrived to figure out.

When a corrupt cop (Shannon) tries to take the package from the hero and things turn threatening, the latter realises he's carrying something important enough for someone to kill for, escapes the villain's clutches, and the chase is on throughout Manhattan streets with Levitt and his buddies zigzagging through traffic to stay one step ahead of the heavy.

I got a huge surprise to see it was written and directed by David Koepp, one of the titans of the screenwriting business. I can only assume they didn't give him anywhere near the budget he needed to flesh it out. It's not serious enough for a thriller, heavy enough for a drama or funny enough to be light on its feet.

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