Movie Review: PREMIUM RUSH (2012)

Published by Shah Shahid on

Joseph Gordon-Levitt has been on a role recently. With THE DARK KNIGHT RISES and a sleuth of other films, but a mis-step comes in the form of PREMIUM RUSH. Here is my Movie Review…

Rating: 1 out of 5 Stars

Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Michael Shannon in Premium Rush 2012Now get this: PREMIUM RUSH is a high octane action adventure film about the world of Bike Messengers in NYC and how one of them gets entangled in a police corruption deal by being in the wrong place at the right time.

You heard me right. Bike Messengers. As in, Couriers. And just like movies about cars, motorcycles, street fighting and other cool subject matter in movies, PREMIUM RUSH tries to show us the ‘cool’ world of Couriers… but it seems silly. It’s bike messengers for crying out loud!

Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Michael Shannon in Premium Rush 2012

bikers only bar… no, not those kinda bikers. 😐

Super awesome former Stunt Bike rider Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Wilee is a talented Law school graduate that works this shitty job simple because he loves it. Yea, it’s already sucky. Right away we’re meant to believe that a guy who cold be making a successful and comfortable living, does a physically demanding, shitty, horrible job that, in the beginning it seems like has no perks and he hates… simply because he loves to ride. Yea…. OK. I get the follow your dream thing, and it makes sense in most stories… but here, not at all.

During a pick up, Wilee gets chased by a corrupt cop for something he’s carrying, which puts him in a situation of awesome car versus Bike chases through out the city, Bike races and just other all cool stunts. That’s all PREMIUM RUSH is really good for.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Michael Shannon in Premium Rush 2012

he narrates too, which is also dumb…

Everyone’s performance is mediocre. The story is flat, even after the big reveal. The ‘world of Bike Messengers’ scenes with the having their own bar, and how Wilee is a rebel for having a Bike with no gears or brakes… comes off as trying too hard and just becomes silly. It’s like trying to make the Tom Sawyer story hip and ‘cool’ by having montage sequences of paint drying in extreme close ups.

PREMIUM RUSH is a short movie that goes by quicker due to the fast pacing and kind of unique chase scenes. It’s somewhat cool to see a bicycle get chased down by a car, especially with all the cool stunts and weaving. It’s entertaining, somewhat. But the movie takes itself too seriously for the audience to be able to do the same, without laughing our asses off.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Michael Shannon in Premium Rush 2012

he was Zod after this… thank Zod.

The best thing about the movie has to be Michael Shannon’s character of the corrupt cop. This guy has no scruples and with a silly speech impediment and obvious anger issues, he steals every scene he’s in. His constant frustration at a Bike Messenger being able to elude him all day, makes it that much funnier to watch him go nuts on screen.

PREMIUM RUSH really is a complete and utter time pass movie. It can be on in the background in a party with friends while you mock the intense action sequence that is a bicycle race through the park.

Shah Shahid

Entertainment Writer | Film & TV Critic | Bollywood Blogger | Host of Split Screen Podcast | Proud Geek Girl Dad


Samuel Asamoah · August 10, 2013 at 9:08 AM

Awesome review brother. A JGL time filler at best. Don Jon looks interesting though.

    Shah Shahid · August 10, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    Thanks for the comment Samuel.

    I’m really looking forward to DON JON! Love it when good actors try writing / directing. Always intriguing to see what they can do on the other side of the camera.

bakedmoviereviews · August 11, 2013 at 10:02 AM

This film looks ridiculous. I must see it now!

    Shah Shahid · August 12, 2013 at 8:25 AM

    I was expecting serious-ness from JGL, probably why I hated this. But if you watch expecting silly awesome-ness… you might enjoy it.

    Thanks for stopping by…

ruth · September 13, 2013 at 2:29 PM

Even w/ JGL n Shannon, I can’t muster up any interest in seeing this one Shah.

    Shah Shahid · September 13, 2013 at 6:06 PM

    I would never even ask you to suffer through such a thing either Ruth. Just… Don’t.

      ruth · September 13, 2013 at 6:10 PM

      Ahah ok, duly noted! Btw dont be a stranger man

        Shah Shahid · September 13, 2013 at 6:11 PM

        Sorry I haven’t been ‘active’ in a few weeks. Busy with new job, new house, back to school, etc. Haven’t even seen my laptop in 3 weeks. :/

sanclementejedi · September 15, 2013 at 12:52 PM

i think i would enjoy this as much as I do folks that won’t stay in the bike lane.

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