Saturday, July 1, 2017

Review of OVERDRIVE: Motoring Mayhem

July 1, 2017

The ads of this French action movie emphasizes that this film was written by the same team that wrote "2 Fast 2 Furious" (2003). That would be the pair of Michael Brandt and Derek Haas, who were also responsible for other box-office winners like "3:10 to Yuma" (2007) and "Wanted" (2009). The poster also claims that this from the producer of "Taken," but the name of Luc Besson was NOT among the producers. However, the director of first "Taken" (2008), Pierre Morel, was indeed one of the producers here. 

Half-brothers Andrew and Garrett Foster both love fast expensive luxury cars, and they work together to steal them, and they do it very well indeed. They are in Marseilles, France to steal a rare 1937 Bugatti and succeeded. But they were eventually caught by the owner, who was a local billionaire gangster Jacomo Morier. At gunpoint, the brothers volunteer to steal the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO from Morier's business nemesis, Max Klemp. 

Because of the gorgeous cars on display in this film, you cannot help but think of the "Fast and Furious" films. The stunts is "Overdrive" are very exciting, but they never quite attain the levels of impossible that the crazy car stunts of "F&F" reach. The car stunts all look practical, not CG, which made them really breathtaking. The best ones were their first heist with the Bugatti, and then the climactic chase around the zigzagging alpine roads. I don't know if that bridge scene had CG help or not, but that was heart-stopping. I did note a scene with very fake-looking "flames". 

Scott Eastwood plays the older brother Andrew. While he does have his iconic father's looks (there were scenes which he had that classic Clint Eastwood squint), his acting chops still look unconvincing in many scenes. In fact, newcomer Freddie Thorp (who does not even have a Wikipedia page of his own yet), because of his character Garrett's more outgoing and gregarious nature, outshines Eastwood in a lot of scenes. 

The ladies Ana de Armas (as computer whiz and Andrew's girlfriend Stephanie) and Gaia Weiss (as ace pickpocket Devin) were definitely welcome eye-candy in this macho production. If you'd like to know, yes, the two do have a scene wearing two-piece bikinis. However, more than that, they do figure in some impressive action stunts of their own. 

As the rival gang leaders, Simon Abkarian (as Jacomo Morier) and Clemens Schick (as Max Klemp) both radiate ruthlessness and heartlessness, even with their cold hard faces alone. Rapper Kaaris makes in intimidating presence as Morier's right hand man, Frank. Abraham Belaga plays Morier's cousin Laurent with some wry dark humor about him.

The intentions of this film are obviously not too high. They just go for shallow adrenaline thrills and it does very well in that regard. However to be fair, the story is not as linear as we would think. In fact, there are some neat unexpected twists and turns in the plot that made the story development very interesting. I would not think too hard about them though. Granted that the dialog can be cheesy, and the brothers have incredible skills and luck, overall, I still found this film definitely fun to watch and entertaining. 6/10. 


  1. Seems to have taken cues from fast and furious series.. Worth watching

  2. I have seen Fast and Furious. I am to curious to compare this movie with that. I do love action, thrill and suspense kind movies. What's in that movie: especially those car thieves has caught my desire to watch this one.

  3. Yes, the poster does remind me of Fast and Furious! Good to read about Freddie Thorpe! I guess he has an awesome future in the industry with his skills!

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  5. I`m starting to appreciate exotic and luxury cars. They`re a unique sight. Based on your review, I might watch this. The cars and the possible thrilling stunts interest me.

    ❀ Grace ❀

  6. I haven't heard of this film before, but if it's anything like Fast and Furious, I might give it a shot! Thanks for sharing!

  7. I'm a huge fan of cars and this must be something that interest me. I always find your movie review a big help cause of how you shared your key points about the movie. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

  8. It does seem similar with F&F. I guess F&F has set the bar for movies like this. It would still be a good watch for the cars and the stunts.

  9. It sounds okay on paper, gorgeous cars, a lot of money and hot girls, but it does sound a lot like the F&F franchise. It is still interesting though.