Getaway (Blu-ray)

December 16, 2013 6 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

Ethan Hawke is having a good year, wouldn’t you say?  Well I guess “good” is a relative term. He’s starred in a trio of films raining from the very good (Before Midnight) and the downright awful (Getaway) and the indie that did well at the box office (The Purge).  I’ve always liked Hawke as an actor and was happy to see 2013 to be pretty kind to him. He seems to have that down to Earth quality that I like in people and it’s conveyed on screen.  And it would also appear that he’s also finally emerged from the grunge’ish era of the 90’s into an actual adult actor. I know, I know…it took a while but Mr. Hawke is now all grown up.  But like every actor who does more than a few roles every year, not every movie will be critically-acclaimed. Don’t believe me? Let’s read on…

Brent Magna (Ethan Hawke) is a former race-car driver who we meet while driving a tricked out Shelby Mustang (very nice, I might add). His character doesn’t even say a word for about ten minutes, but we quickly deduce that his wife has been kidnapped and that the mysterious voice (Jon Voight) on the other end is the one who holds her fate in his hands. Taking place in the streets of Sofia, Bulgaria Brent maneuvers his “Super Snake” through countless obstacles before he manages to commandeer a passenger – “The Kid” (Selena Gomez).  It would appear that this second character doesn’t have that much point in the movie and, truthfully, it probably would have progressed fine without her. But her father is the CEO of the bank and as we all know by now, the voice on the other end wants, you guessed it, money. As the tasks become more and more outrageous, we wonder if Brent will ever see his beloved wife again.

If you can factor out the plot and just concentrate on some of the driving and stunts, then Getaway isn’t really that bad. Unfortunately for me I wasn’t able to accomplish that feat and I was almost immediately bored by the mundane and predictable plot.  I suppose this has elements of The Chase (a mid 90’s Charlie Sheen movie), some parts of any of the Fast and Furious movies and throw in a bit of Die Hard: With a Vengeance. Oh and if you’ve ever seen Speed, where they loop the video playback to “fool” the person watching them…yeah, that’s in there as well.  I can only hope that Hawke and Gomez were paid handsomely for their efforts here, because this movie had very little, if any, redeeming value.

Video: How’s it look?

The movie plays out in a close approximation of real time, meaning that the majority of it takes place at night on the rain-drenched streets of Sofia, Bulgaria.  Warner’s 2.40:1 AVC HD image does look pretty good, especially considering how dark the movie is.  We’re treated to a few different visual “tricks” in that we can see Hawke and Gomez via a video camera as they ride along, but by and large we get a very nice-looking picture that has strong black levels.  Detail is right up there as well, we can actually see some grey hairs in Hawke’s mane of hair and though I’m not a fan, there are a few choice shots of Selena Gomez as well.

Audio: How’s it sound?

If you’ve ever heard the growl of a Shelby Mustang then I have to say that this movie does a pretty good job with reproducing that sound. Unlike the purr of most cars, this one doesn’t just ask – it takes!  There are countless “car chase” scenes as we follow Brent through the streets as he endangers himself and those around him. Wheels screetch, park benches fly and pretty much anything that’s in the way of the car ends up destroyed. Taking this into account, the DTS HD Master Audio sound mix does a very good job.

Supplements: What are the extras?

Packing a few more supplements than I’d hoped, Getaway offers a bit of salvation in the extras department.

  • Crash Cams – We get more information than we need about the vast amount of cameras used in the making of this movie.
  • Destroying a Custom Shelby – Gearheads might appreciate this one, as we get a pretty good look at the car used in the film.
  • Metal and Asphault – A veritable count as to the amount of cars used and destroyed during the production.
  • Selena Gomez: On Set – A few words from the Producer of the film and some insight by Miss Gomez.
  • The Train Station – I actually liked this one as it gives us a set up of the sequence and some behind the scenes footage.
  • UltraViolet Copy – Though not blatantly listed on the box, this does indeed feature an UltraViolet copy of the film.

Disc Scores

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