The first trailer for director Courtney Solomon’s (Dungeons and Dragons) new action thriller, Getaway, was thoroughly ridiculousness. And not ridiculous in an over-the-top, gleefully insane way, but ridiculous in a baffling, who-thought-this-was-a-good-idea way. It presented us with a rock stupid plot wherein Jon Voight kidnaps Ethan Hawke’s wife and forces him to keep driving fast in some sort of senseless Speed recreation if he ever wants to get her back, it made us sit through a bunch of contentless exposition delivered in one of Voight’s silly accents, and, perhaps most ludicrously, it cast cherub-faced teen idol Selena Gomez as some sort of gun-toting street thug who goes around carjacking grown men.
The second trailer for the film is pretty ridiculous too. Let’s get that out of the way up front. But it also takes some crucial steps in toning down many of the most head-scratching aspects of the first ad, and it even makes Getaway look like it could possibly be a big dumb action movie worth watching. Okay, it still features Voight doing one of his silly accents, but everything else is much better. Take a look.
First off, we start off with a lengthier portrayal of the Hawke character’s wife getting violently abducted, which makes the whole situation feel a lot more dangerous and stakes-filled this time around, and a lot less like a silly plot contrivance in order to film scenes of cars driving fast. Secondly, the expositional dialogue makes it slightly more clear that Voight’s outrageously foreign character actually has an end-game in mind for all of the fast-driving craziness, which makes the whole presentation come off as much less of a senseless series of crashes and explosions. Third and most importantly, Gomez’s insertion in the story seems to have been completely redone, making her an innocent girl walking down the street who gets swept up in an evil plan instead of asking us to believe that she’s a reckless hooligan jumping into situations with guns blazing. That’s a much easier pill to swallow.
Are these reframings of Getaway enough to make it look like it might be a good movie? Not really. They’re enough to keep it from looking completely laughable though, and that’s probably going to be all it takes to get most action fans in the theater when this one gets released on August 30. Really, the only big red flag left that signifies this one is going to be unacceptably bad is how low-quality all of the footage of the car chases still looks. Did they shoot it on flip phones? We can probably even forgive that if it means they were able to pay for more explosions though. There does seem to be a lot of explosions.