23.3 C
New York
Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Netflix Original Film Wheelman (TheaterByte Movie Review)

Netflix Original Film Wheelman (2017) Key ArtWheelman is the latest “man-behind-the-wheel” adventure wrapped in a crime caper tale, but this particular tale is brought to you directly from Netflix. The film stars Frank Grillo and is produced by Grillo and Joe Carnahan (The GreyThe A-TeamNarc). The film is written by relative newcomer Jeremy Rush.

Grillo has no name in this film. What we do know about him is that he’s a getaway driver, has a daughter, and an ex-wife that he has to do right by. He has spent some time in prison and now is back doing what he knows best. On one particular and somewhat grating night he is tasked upon being a getaway driver for a crew that is about to rob a bank. As everything is going down at a rapid pace he receives a phone call from a mysterious and interested party. The voice on the other end of the line tells him that he has to ditch the crew but take the money from the heist. He does.

Grillo must find out who is behind this new potential double-cross while avoiding the police, who are hot on his trail, keeping his family safe, and avoiding miscellaneous gangsters. Upon watching the trailer for Wheelman, it had some of the same tropes that other films of this sub-genre had, but with the caveat that it was being released exclusively by Netflix. If you know Netflix then you know they have a stellar record for releasing films by rising stars and talented established folks from the entertainment industry.

[envira-album id=”105640″]

An awesome fact about this film is that it marks writer/director Jeremy Rush’s feature film debut. All he did prior to this was a couple of episodes of he series Caribe Road and two short films (No Road to Follow, John Doe and the Anti). Now that the floodgates of streaming have opened up Wheelman will potentially get to be seen by millions of people. What he lacks in experience he more than makes up for it in this film. I like that the camera is left alone a majority of the time, so that we may digest what is going onscreen — and never during insert shots, you can see what is going on clearly. I also like that there are several instances, including the opening scene, where the camera doesn’t move, but the characters and the car does. Wheelman is an amazingly well designed little film.

Now on to what I didn’t care about. We do spend a lot of time with Grillo and his predicament. He’s charming, funny, tough, etc., but the overall story fails him, because we really don’t get to explore his world. Yes, I am sure some will say that it is irrelevant, because it’s just one night in the life of a getaway driver. Still, there are plenty of secondary characters that are introduced and never seen again. Why not? When the final resolution hits at the end — it’s good and all, but who are these people and what was all of that about? Maybe if the film ran a bit longer (the film only runs 82 minutes with credits) certain threads could have been tied up a bit more neatly. The film itself is entertaining and I did enjoy it, but a part of me feels I would have liked it even more if it had more detail in certain subplots.

I really like the world of Wheelman and hope that if it succeeds a sequel can be made or even spun off into a series. Hell, I would totally be down for some Frank Grillo driving hot cars for a couple of seasons breaking heads and taking names. This is a fine enough film that could have been made better if only a few loose ends could have been tied up. That’s me being picky, though. Wheelman gets a hearty recommendation.

Wheelman is available globally for streaming on Netflix October 20, 2017.

3.5 / 5 TheaterByte Rating
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 5 Users (0 votes)
Solution Entertainment Group | WarParty Films | NetflixStudios & Distributors
TV-MA (Graphic violence and profanity)Rating Certificate
82 Mins.Run Time
2.35:1Aspect Ratio
Jeremy RushDirector
Jeremy RushWriter
20 Oct. 2017Release Date
The Film
A getaway man on a bank robbery (Frank Grillo) is double crossed and shifts into shifts into high gear to find out who screwed him over in this high octane, Netflix Original film from first time feature director Jeremy Rush. With only few monetary lapses in logic, Wheelman is a lot of fun for fans of car chase films and is recommended.
What people say... Login to rate
Order by:

Be the first to leave a review.

User Avatar User Avatar
{{{ review.rating_title }}}
{{{review.rating_comment | nl2br}}}

This review has no replies yet.

Show more
Show more
{{ pageNumber+1 }}



Related Articles

Join the Discussion on TheaterByte!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected

- Advertisement -

Notice of Compliance with FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 255

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255 guidelines, this website hereby states that it receives free discs and other theatrical or home entertainment "screeners" and access to screening links from studios and/or PR firms, and is provided with consumer electronics devices on loan from hardware manufacturers and/or PR firms respectively for the purposes of evaluating the products and its content for editorial reviews. We receive no compensation from these companies for our opinions or for the writing of reviews or editorials.
Permission is sometimes granted to companies to quote our work and editorial reviews free of charge. Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or the services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Latest Articles