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Antonio Negret
Scott Eastwood, Freddie Thorp, Ana de Armas, Gaia Weiss
Writing Credits:
Michael Brandt, Derek Haas

Two car thief brothers journey to the south of France for new opportunities but wind up in the cross hairs of the local crime boss.
Rated PG-13.

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 93 min.
Price: $24.99
Release Date: 11/7/2017

• “The Caper” Featurette
• “The Crew” Featurette
• “The Cars” Featurette
• Previews


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Overdrive [Blu-Ray] (2017)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (November 16, 2017)

Will Scott Eastwood’s fame ever equal that of his father Clint? God no – Clint is probably a top 10 all-time Hollywood legend.

But the younger Eastwood‘s career seems to be on the rise. He recently played supporting roles in blockbusters such as Suicide Squad and Fate of the Furious, and he gets the lead in 2018’s big-budget Pacific Rim sequel.

In the meantime, we find Eastwood as the main character in 2017’s direct-to-video effort Overdrive. Car thieves Andrew (Eastwood) and Garrett Foster (Freddie Thorp) go to the south of France to steal a ridiculously valuable Bugatti.

While this caper succeeds, it comes with a catch. They purloin the vehicle from crime boss Jacomo Morier (Simon Abkarian), and he doesn’t feel too happy about their actions.

Stuck in hot water, Morier gives the brothers a chance to escape a bad fate. If they steal a car owned by Morier’s rival Max Klemp (Clemens Schick), he’ll set them free. Inevitably, complications ensue.

Earlier I reflected on Scott Eastwood’s career potential, and I must admit I wonder if his face will hold him back, as he looks an awful lot like his old man. Honestly, Scott bears such a strong resemblance to Clint that it occasionally feels like he’s a CG recreation of his dad.

If Scott branched into roles outside of Clint’s typical purview, the resemblance might matter less. Since Scott seems determined to follow in Clint’s “anti-hero” footsteps, it becomes more of a potential issue.

Given the example of Overdrive, though, Scott’s biggest obstacle might connect to his choices. A one-dimensional, by-the-numbers caper flick, Overdrive fails to bring us much excitement.

It’d be easy to view Overdrive as a ripoff of the Fast and Furious franchise – because it is. Granted, the film’s influences don’t end there, as one can find the reflection of many other “caper flicks”, but I seriously doubt that Overdrive would exist without the massive success of the Fast and Furious franchise.

It’s a bad sign when a movie announces the start of production in 2011 but doesn’t actually roll film until 2016. Apparently that occurred here, as it took years for Overdrive to finally take flight.

It also seems ominous when the Blu-ray’s box offers misleading credits. It claims to come from “the director of Taken”, which is true – to a degree. Taken’s Pierre Morel acted as a producer here, whereas the promotional copy implies he directed the film.

Instead, Antonio Negret takes the reins here and shows few signs of inspiration or real talent. He turns out a film heavy on clichés and light on excitement or creativity.

Not that the script leaves much room for freshness, as it ladles out on trite character and plot point after another. Overdrive feels as stale as its banal title.

Still, even with a dull screenplay, Negret could’ve done more with the material than he did. The movie simply lacks any real vivacity, as everything here feels flat and generic. The action scenes boast some good stunts but they fail to deliver actual tension or excitement.

The actors all look good but they can’t bring life to their parts. The characters start as predictable and forgettable and never elevate above those ranks.

In the end, Overdrive feels like the derivative action movie it is. It fails to do anything new or exciting, so it winds up as a forgettable experience.

The Disc Grades: Picture B/ Audio B+/ Bonus D+

Overdrive appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a largely positive presentation.

For the most part, sharpness seemed solid. Occasional instances of slight softness materialized, but these remained fairly modest.

I saw no issues with jagged edges or moiré effects. Both edge haloes and print flaws remained absent.

To the surprise of no one, Overdrive opted for a standard orange and teal palette. The hues worked fine within those constraints, though they could’ve been a bit peppier.

Blacks appeared pretty deep and dense, while shadows seemed clear and concise. I thought the image worked fine, though it lacked the qualities it needed to become great.

As for the film’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, it used the spectrum in the active manner I expected. The movie’s many driving-oriented sequences fared the best, as they allowed the vehicles to zoom and zip around the room in a convincing manner.

General atmosphere also worked well, and the mix used all five speakers to bolster the score. This became a little heavy-handed, in my opinion, but not to a terrible degree.

Audio quality seemed good, as music was bold and full. Effects appeared accurate and well-defined, with deep low-end as well.

Speech seemed natural and concise, without edginess. The soundtrack added pizzazz to the proceedings.

We find three featurettes here, all of which connect: The Caper (7:17), The Crew (7:19) and The Cars (3:34). Across these, we get comments from director Antonio Negret, producer Pierre Morel, and actors Scott Eastwoood, Freddie Thorp, Gaia Weiss, and Ana de Armas.

The featurettes look at story and characters, cast and performances, sets and locations, stunts and action, the director’s impact and various vehicles. Along the way, a smattering of decent notes emerge, but most of the time, the material feels fluffy and promotional.

The disc opens with ads for Transformers: The Last Knight and Baywatch (2017). No trailer for Overdrive appears here.

Into the crowded genre of car-based caper flicks steps Overdrive, and it does nothing to enrich the form. Essentially a poor man’s take on the Fast and Furious films, this one lacks much drama or excitement. The Blu-ray offers generally positive picture and audio along with minor supplements. I can’t find much to like in this dull adventure.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
0 3:
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