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The action comes fast and furious in ‘Premium Rush’



Genre: ,
Starring: , ,
Directed By:
MPAA Rating:
Release Date: August 24, 2012
Length: 91 minutes




Total Score
7/ 10



The movie delivers on two-wheeled thrills and relentless action.


The storyline is a little too fabricated to be believable.

Bottom Line

We didn’t expect much from this late-summer action flick, but by setting the action in real time, director and co-writer David Koepp keeps the action coming fast and furious in ‘Premium Rush.’

Posted August 22, 2012 by

Full Review

We have to admit we didn’t expect much from this late-summer action flick that stars the versatile (and ubiquitous) Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a bike messenger who goes to extremes to make sure a package reaches its destination. But as avid single-speed (but with a freewheel and brakes, thank you very much) cyclists, we were looking forward to seeing some two-wheeled thrills. And in that respect, the film delivers. By setting the action in real time (the 91-minute flick essentially takes place in a 91-minute time frame), director and co-writer David Koepp keeps the action coming fast and furious in Premium Rush.

That mysterious package we told you about actually belongs to Nima (Jamie Chung), a college student who rooms with Vanessa (Danie Ramirez), a bike messenger. When Nima has an important envelope that needs to be in Chinatown by 7pm, she calls upon Wilee (Gordon-Levitt), a reckless bike messenger Vanessa attempted to date, only to realize he treats his job better than he does his girlfriends. After Nima hands Wilee the delivery, a man claiming to be campus security tries to take it away. Willee refuses and rides off as quickly as he can. Turns out the man is Bobby Monday (Michael Shannon), a corrupt cop who will do just about anything to pay off his gambling debts.

The rest of the film is essentially one long chase scene, and thanks to the crafty work of some serious stunt doubles, we’re treated to scenes of cyclists riding on top of cars and skidding down congested city streets. Even if the storyline is a bit too fabricated to be believable, this is thrilling stuff. While the film assumes more camaraderie between bike messengers than actually exits (you’ll see what we mean in the movie’s final scene), the references to cycling gear and equipment are on the mark. Not that you have to be a cycling enthusiast to get a kick out of flick.


Jeff started writing about rock ’n’ roll some 20 years ago when he stood in the pouring rain to hitch hike his way to see R.E.M. on their Life’s Rich Pageant tour. Since that time, he's written for various daily newspapers, alt-weeklies, magazines and websites. Feel free to comment on his posts or suggest music, film and art to him at [email protected].


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