‘Getaway Driver’ Hearkens Back to Hollywood’s Classic Car Chases

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Short of the Day

A high-octane short.

It just takes a momentary twist to make a good film great. Think about The Sixth Sense: until it’s final revelation that [SPOILER (?)] Bruce Willis has been dead the whole time, the most intriguing bit of that film was wondering how a mook like Willis got a doctorate in psychology. But then they drop that twist and oh shit, you got yourself a movie.

Getaway Driver, a short film directed by Abner Pastoll, is another example of this. What starts out as a cool, slick, high-octane short about a lady and her pug trying to escape a bad guy via a sweet ride becomes something else entirely in its final seconds, something I’m obviously not going to spoil here. As for that escape, Pastoll and director of photography Richard Bell have choreographed a thrilling, breakneck, nail-biter of a chase set in a parking garage that’s highly reminiscent – in the best way – of a certain scene from Walter Hill’s immortal The Driver. The action tells the story here, and the result is a beautifully engaging adrenaline boost.

Couple of fun facts: first, the orange Ford Capri MKiii used in the film was borrowed from a stranger. Seriously, they had another vehicle in mind then saw the Ford just parked on the street and knock on doors until they found the owner. When you see what they do with this Capri, you’ll agree that the owner is either the most trusting person in the world, or the most careless. Two, if you recognize the pug in the film, then you’re a fan of The Crown; Mabel is her name, and she’s one of the Duke of Windsor’s pets on the Netflix series. Getaway Driver is her final film, and largest, most important role to date. Way to go out on top, Mabel, enjoy retirement.

As for Pastoll, Getaway Driver is his ninth short, and is evidence of a filmmaker on the brink of bigger things. He’s also directed two features to-date, Shooting Shona from 2004 and 2015’s Road Games. His next feature, A Good Woman is Hard to Find, is in pre-production now and will star actress Sarah Bolger, best known to Americans from the TV series The Tudors, Once Upon a Time, and Into the Badlands. Get to know Pastoll’s work now, here and on his Vimeo page.

Novelist, Screenwriter, Video Essayist