Under the Radar

Home Video: 'Overdrive'

"Overdrive" takes what's best about the Fast & Furious movies (car chases), lowers the budget so that the stunts are more grounded in reality and bolts the whole enterprise to a standard issue heist movie plot about a pair of brothers who steal exotic cars on demand for wealthy clients in the south of France.

The object of desire here is the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, one of the world's rarest (only 36 made) and most expensive collector (last offered at $57 million) cars. There's also a prominent role for a Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic, which sets the plot in motion after the half-brothers (Scott Eastwood and Freddie Thorp) steal it from a moving truck.

The credited director here is Antonio Negret, but dig into the bonus featurettes and the cast strongly suggest that the film's producer Pierre Morel ("Taken," "The Gunman," "District B13") played a large role in staging the excellent action sequences.

The plot has "twists" and "surprises" that won't surprise anyone. It has serviceable performances from the international cast, excepting a standout performance from Ana de Armas (who seems destined for bigger things after her role as Ryan Gosling's digital mate in "Blade Runner 2049").

Still, there's none of the hyper-serious Vin Diesel pronouncements about FAMILY that have started to drag down the "Furious" movies. The straight-faced execution of a wafer-thin plot doesn't detract from the action and the cars.

The cars are awesome, the scenery is fantastic and there's not too much time between explosions and action sequences. Most definitely not a waste of time.

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