A Hollywood speed thriller, a star who is riding high on success of a cult series and a video game franchise which has fans all across the world - one would think that with this recipe, director Scott Waugh can rustle up an edge-of-your-seat experience in Need for Speed?
But going by what the critics from around the world say, this dish is just so-so. To begin with, this Aaron Paul, Imogen Poots and Dominic Cooper-starrer has just about all the clichés you associate with car chase movies.
Associated Press film writer Jessica Herndon, however, asks you to look beyond the clichéd elements. "This adrenaline-fuelled stunt fest is an unequivocal thrill that deserves to be seen on the big screen. Starring Aaron Paul, Need for Speed is fiercely entertaining, loaded with beautiful cars, winding roads and racers in leather coats."
For the lovers of speed, the film comes chock-a-bloc with crashes and car chases. "A high-octane epic, the slick, exciting and often funny Need For Speed delivers enough intense car chase entertainment to keep petrolheads more than happy. With its chases, crashes, jumps and gas-guzzling sense of adventure, the film is a throwback to car classics such as Bullitt and Vanishing Point. But it's all delivered in a very smooth, modern style," according to Daily Mirror's Mark Adams.
However, fans of Breaking Bad should not expect a lot from Paul, who is hardly his talented self in the film. Time Out's Anna Smith writes, "Breaking Bad fans will tell you that Aaron Paul is a talented actor, but it's hard to believe watching this car-racing actioner inspired by the Need for Speed video games. Audiences purely interested in the cars won't be disappointed - frankly they're sexier than the cast. But anyone looking for a story, or a performance as impressive as Jesse from Breaking Bad, will be."
In short, this one is purely for stunt fans. If you want even a little bit more, watch a good film from the Fast & Furious franchise. "The film stakes everything on the inane and repetitive car chases, which work only in a world in which everything arranges itself to suit the next stunt," writes New York Post's Kyle Smith.