Imogen Poots and Aaron Paul in Need for Speed (2014)

Need for Something More

Custom car builder Tobey Marshall (Aaron Paul) ends up in a small street race with Dino Brewster (Dominic Cooper) and Pete (Harrison Gilbertson) but it is a race which ends in disaster when not only is Pete killed in a car crash caused by Dino but Dino frames Tobey for his death. After spending two years inside Tobey is released with one thing on his mind, making sure that Dino gets what is coming to him and he plans to make sure he gets during The DeLeon, an illegal street race run by the mysterious Monarch (Michael Keaton). But after persuading the owner of a custom car he built to loan it back to him for the race Tobey finds himself with a passenger in the form of Julia (Imogen Poots).

I don't think I have ever played the video game "Need for Speed", back when I played racing games the popular one was "Pole Position" so once again I have no idea how this movie adaptation compares to the game. I would imagine that the team behind the movie "Need for Speed" have basically come up with a bit of a revenge back story and then just feathered that in to all the action which means fast looking cars, zipping in and out of each other and some stunts. Basically what I am saying is that not only does "Need for Speed" deliver basically what you expect but in reality that is basic.

As such "Need for Speed" for me is more of a movie for a young generation who dream of owning fast cars and burning up the streets rather than those who actually have a driving licence. I say that because the storyline which sees Tobey and Julia end up falling for each other, flirting with the law with some driving, a stunt involving an army helicopter as well as lots of spins and jumps are all the far fetched stuff of a young imagination rather than those who want semi realistic escapism. I'm not saying it is bad but it is a movie which will make those who are older realise that the escapism they enjoyed when they were young may feel a bit like nonsense now.

Because "Need for Speed" is for me quite a basic movie it has to be said that the characters are incredibly basic as well. Aaron Paul gives us some sort of brooding moodiness as the quiet Tobey whilst Imogen Poots gives us a touch of kooky as Julia. Then there is Dominic Cooper who gives us the usual elements of flashy but jealous as bad guy Dino. But it is all incredibly text book and in truth forgettable.

What this all boils down to is that "Need for Speed" is just your basic street race movie, no fancy characters, no ground breaking storyline and to be honest cars as well as car stunts which don't really stand out from the crowd. But it is a bit of escapism which if you just want some mindless fun it isn't utterly terrible.