Speaking over the phone, a mysterious villain (Jon Voight, seen primarily in close-ups of his mouth) orders former racing superstar Brent Magna (Ethan Hawke) to steal an armoured hot rod and, with the vehicle’s owner (Selena Gomez) in tow, complete a series of daredevil missions if he ever wants to see his kidnapped wife again.
That sort of ludicrous premise should be ripe for outrageous B-movie thrills. Unfortunately, this genre cheapie – no relation to the Jim Thompson novel of a similar name or its 1972 Steve McQueen–Sam Peckinpah adaptation – is, despite a constant focus on auto mayhem, a lumbering dud incapable of escaping first gear.
Civilians are put in harm’s way. Fireballs are escaped. Cop cars are flipped. Yet director Courtney Solomon pours on the surveillance-cam footage and edits his set pieces so manically that reckless thrills are sabotaged. That’s a near-fatal flaw, as ‘Getaway’ cares little about plot and even less about credibility (cue mouthed Gomez spouting nuggets of wisdom about computer servers and ISPs). If you can’t even deliver blatant car-nography, what’s the point?