MPAA Rating: TV-MA
Director: Jeremy Rush
Starring: Frank Grillo, Caitlin Carmichael, Garret Dillahunt
Runtime: 1 hr 22 mins
What It Is: A man known simply as “Wheelman” is driving two bank robbers. When the Wheelman is stabbed in the back he’s expected to deliver drugs for an unknown fixer. When he refuses to do this he becomes a wanted man. By his original handler whom he feels stabbed HIM in the back and by this handler from Philly wanting to embarrass the other guys. Now he’s caught in the middle and has to make several decisions in order to save both himself and his family.
What We Think: This is a film that truly surprised me. I expected a run of the mill actioneer. What I got instead was something more closely akin to the Tom Hardy film Locke. Suspenseful and shot from mostly the interior of the off-color BMW the Wheelman is given this is a fairly pulse-pounding affair. The story itself falters a bit at times, but overall there’s a sense that the film understands what it is. Easy filmmaking but practical. This is a Grillo showpiece, one he knocks out of the park completely.
Our Grade: B, A complete surprise for sure. I literally did not think this film was going to be the least bit interesting. Instead, I got a thrilling, edge of your seat film that really hit it on all cylinders. Even a fairly weak third act and a bit of cliched writing couldn’t stop this one. Frank Grillo is a guy that can be a star. I mean he’s already been in the Marvel cinematic universe like in Captain America: Civil War and his own franchise with The Purge: Anarchy. Most everyone else in this cast is an unknown commodity outside of Shea Whigham who’s a great character actor.