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South African car chase movie with a lot to offer
Leofwine_draca14 December 2014
Here's a film with a difference: a South African car chase movie, filmed from a single location (within the car) a year before the British movie LOCKE came out and was acclaimed for it. VEHICLE 19 is more of a straightforward crime/thriller, with plenty of nods and stylistic similarities to the superior DRIVE and Paul Walker cast in the central role to bring in the FAST & FURIOUS crowd.

But is it any good, I hear you ask? The answer is, generally, yes. There are a few plot holes here and there and some inconsistencies in the narrative, but for the most part it works very well. A word of warning, though: this is NOT an action film; there are only two car chases in the whole movie, and one of those isn't very good. The pulse-pounding climax more than makes up for that, though.

Instead, it's a film which tells a familiar, small-scale storyline at a fast pace and with decent direction and editing. Walker plays the typical 'wrong man' character who finds himself in the wrong place, at the wrong time, and in the wrong vehicle, and the supporting South African cast acquit themselves well. Make no mistake, though; this is a film in which Walker spends 90% of the screen time alone in his car, so it's all on him. And he's remarkably good, much better than he was in the FAST & FURIOUS franchise.

VEHICLE 19 will win no critical plaudits and indeed it pales in comparison to either bigger budget, action-filled fare or the excellent DRIVE. But I liked it nonetheless. It kept me watching throughout and it stays realistic for the most part, and you can't say fairer than that.
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motivational flaws
SnoopyStyle6 April 2017
Michael Woods (Paul Walker) is on parole after being released from an American prison. He breaks parole to go to Johannesburg, South Africa to find his ex-wife Angie. He picks up the wrong rental car at the airport. He finds a phone and a gun. He is about to abandon the car at a junkyard when he gets a call from police detective Smith. Smith gives him an address to swap cars. Michael gets hopelessly lost and then he finds Rachel Shabangu bound in the back of the minivan.

Michael proclaims that "This is Crazy!" I feel the same way about the movie. It makes no sense why he would keep the woman prisoner. He should just let her go and clean up whatever fingerprints are on the car. Every move makes less sense. The character is an idiot and Paul Walker does not really play idiots well. I do mean idiot as in mentally deficient. There is nothing holding him to the situation. This is very manufactured which drains all tension from the drama and the action. It doesn't matter how well it's film or how exciting are the car chases. The character simply doesn't make sense.
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Running out of gas
Prismark1016 February 2015
Vehicle 19 is another of these bottle films which tends to be stripped down movies firmly fixed usually on one setting. A boot of car, a car, a phone booth etc. It usually has one well known star, sometimes there is also a star cameo and mainly headed for straight to pay TV channels or DVD.

Paul Walker stars and is an Executive Producer for this film where he plays a fugitive from the United States who has broken his parole conditions gone to South Africa, where he picks up a rental car and is meeting up with his girlfriend who works for the American Embassy.

However he has picked up the wrong rental car and worse he is impatient to wait for the mix up to be corrected. Bad mistake, as he discovers a gun, a mobile phone and a bound & gagged woman in the back seat of his car. An incoming phone call makes it clear that this car was intended for someone else and he enters a world of police corruption as he is hunted down.

Bravo to Walker for making a film in Johannesburg which gives the film an unusual setting. Its of course sad that its another car chase film especially given the circumstances of his death.

The film is enjoyable at the beginning but lapses into clichés and implausibilities as the weak script brings it to a halt. The showdown at the end in front of the courthouse looks ludicrous but the car chase scenes makes the film look better than it actually is.
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Paul Walker in a car
nogodnomasters17 April 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Michael Woods (Paul Walker) is an America on parole in South Africa wanting to visit his wife or ex-wife at the embassy. He picks up vehicle 19 at the rental place and it is clearly not for him. This leads him into a battle with crooked police as the vehicle contains things to implicate them in illegal activity.

This film takes place in the car, and not just just bits and pieces of it, I mean all of it. Paul Walker in the car talking on the cell phone. Paul Walker in the car driving on the wrong side of the street. Paul Walker in the car talking to people outside. Paul Walker in the car being chased by the police. Paul Walker being pulled over. Paul Walker in the car being shot at. Paul Walker in the car going through a car wash. Paul Walker in the car while it is getting painted...seriously. Paul Walker is on the screen so much George Clooney wants to change agents. The plot grew boring with no twists.

Parental Guide: F-bomb. No sex or nudity.
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kosmasp26 October 2013
It might be a nice look of JoBurg as another reviewer stated, but I don't think this should count into the vote of your movie. Or how much you enjoy it. If it helps you though, than good for you. The movie is a bit like Transporter and other movies of the same kind. Unfortunately it never takes off (no pun intended).

It's not really Paul Walkers fault, but he does get typecast a lot with Fast & Furious themed movies. On the other hand he only really succeed in one other movie he was starring himself: Running Scared. You kinda hope he gets another script like that. Until then stick to the Fast & Furious franchise .. or watch him in lesser roles (Pawnshop Chronicles), if you're a fan of Paul Walker
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A solid little thriller despite a few obvious flaws
Tweekums5 December 2018
Michael Woods is an American who has just arrived in South Africa; he goes to pick up his hire car and discovered the company has given him the wrong vehicle... he is in a rush so takes it anyway. It soon becomes apparent that he has made a big mistake when he finds a gun under the seat and a woman, bound and gagged, in the boot. She explains that she has evidence against powerful people who want her dead; now Michael is in their sights as well.

I was surprised to see just how negative the opinions of this film appear to be; it may not be up there with big budget Hollywood productions but it is still a taut thriller which manages to be quite inventive. It must be admitted that the plot is farfetched... who would go to the trouble of kidnapping somebody they wanted dead then leave them in an airport hire-car for a hitman to finish off!? We just have to suspend our disbelief for that one. If you can do that the story provides plenty of tense moments, these include car chases, shooting, an explosion and a nice stand-off at the end. Paul Walker is solid as Michael and Naima McLean impresses as the kidnapped woman, Rachel Shabangu. Perhaps most interesting was the way the camera never leaves the vehicle so even though it is being driven around Jo'berg it has the feel of a 'single location' film. Overall a good little thriller in an interesting location; just be prepared to suspend your disbelief as characters make some strange choices.
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A car movie with contents and not just fancy, shiny muscle cars...
paul_haakonsen9 June 2018
When this movie started, I went 'oh no, not another "Fast and Furious" car movie'. And I believe that thought was spurred on by Paul Walker starring in it and from the DVD movie's cover.

But luckily "Vehicle 19" turned out to be so much more better in terms of storyline and having a solid script, which definitely put most of the "Fast and Furious" movies to shame.

Sure, it may not have the big fancy cars and the special effects that "Fast and Furious" has, but it is still managing to stand very well on its own.

There definitely is a good amount of action and car chases in the movie. When you combine that with a properly thought through storyline, then you get a movie that actually is worth watching.

"Vehicle 19" has some good acting performances, although the cast was a relatively small ensemble of actors and actresses.

If you enjoy car movies and enjoyed Paul Walker in movies, then "Vehicle 19" is definitely well worth checking out.
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South African Locations Highlight An Average Indie
LeonLouisRicci29 December 2014
Here's Another One of those Contained by its Own Conceit. A Point of View that Never Waivers, a One-Set Situation, a Gimmick and Not a Very Recommendable Gimmick Considering what has Come Before in Similar Movies.

Paul Walker Drives Around South Africa and the Camera is Locked in the Car for the Duration. The Story and Walker's Behavior are Also Confined to Accepting Some Unbelievable and Dumb Behavior. Your Suspension of Disbelief will have You Screaming at the Screen.

But the Scenery, Outside the Car, is a Bit Different as are the Natives. Colorful Graffiti is Everywhere, and How About that Nifty Drive Through so the Homies or are They Homeless can Make a Few Bucks on the Side.

It is a Colorful if At Times Lifeless Affair. The Best Part is when Walker Makes One of the Many Discoveries in the Rental Car From Hell and He has Somebody to Talk to that is Not on a Cell Phone.

Overall, Average Independent Movie that is Watchable but don't Expect Anything Much. For Paul Walker Fans and Those Wishing to Glimpse a Stranger in a Strange Land. Maybe if the Movie would have been a Bit Stranger it would have been a Bit Better.
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Imaginative B-Movie Thriller
zardoz-1312 November 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Paul Walker finds himself up to his ears in trouble in sophomore writer & director Mukunda Michael Dewil's "Vehicle 19,"an 85-minute car chase thriller lensed chiefly in a mini-van from fade-in to fade-out. Indeed, everything is depicted from the perspective of the vehicle. Clearly, Dewil didn't have much of a budget so he confined the action to the titular ride. This claustrophobic, white-knuckled, nail-biter is a fish-out-of-water yarn. American citizen Michael Woods (Paul Walker of "Joyride) arrives in Johannesburg, South Africa, to patch things with his ex-wife Angelica who works at the U.S. Embassy. Actually, Woods has been in trouble from the get-go because he jumped parole. No sooner has our hero oriented himself to driving on the wrong side of the road in South Africa than he discovers an automatic pistol with a silencer and a Blackberry cell phone in the mini-van. Things wax progressively worse when a bound and gagged woman, Rachel Shabangu (Naima McLean), emerges from the rear compartment of the vehicle. She has evidence that will expose the Johannesburg Chief of Police and his role in a sex trafficking ring. Unfortunately, Rachel dies in route to the courthouse. Before she dies, Rachel records a confession onto the Blackberry that Michael vows to deliver to Judge Mzuka. The latter character struggles without success to convince Michael that he should avoid the courthouse. Nevertheless, our stubborn hero plunges through the barricades erected in front of the building and takes a hostage. In some respects, "Vehicle 19" has elements of the Clint Eastwood extradition thriller "The Gauntlet" set in Las Vegas. The authorities dispatch every vehicle to halt our lone hero, but nobody can stop him until he smashes through the barricade in front of the building. Afterward, things settle down with our hero and a policeman ogling each other over the sights of their guns. Mukunda has appropriated some vintage elements from Alfred Hitchcock's movies. An innocent man pursued with a vengeance by the Johannesburg Police Department has nowhere to turn. The action is told in flashback, and Mukunda stages some careening car chases in what essentially qualifies as a one-man show. One of the best scenes has our hero suddenly getting T-boned. An unshaven Walker is suitably desperate throughout this harrowing, 85-minute melodrama.
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'Same song, second verse, same as the first and a little bit worse'
gradyharp9 November 2013
Writer/director Mukunda Michael Dewil gives us yet another boilerplate story who main character is a car chase. Set in Johannesburg South Africa the place may be different but the plot is threadbare. The whole film would have been better if the lead character Michael Woods (portrayed by the hunky Paul Walker) had been allowed to take off his shirt to show the better part of his talent which has been misused in this boring little drama. The remainder of the cast (with the possible exception of Naima McLean and Gys de Villiers is misused or unremarkable.

For those who wish to see a plot out line, the following my provide that information: 'Michael (Paul Walker) is an ex-con breaking his parole conditions to visit the ex-wife he hasn't seen in 5 years. He's late and a power outage at the airport rental company mixes up his booking. Driving now, he hears a phone beep but not his phone -a phone inside the rental cars glove compartment. Someone probably left it by mistake. Stuck in traffic now, Michael, scratching around under the car seat, feels something - a gun, the kind of gun you kill people with. The phone rings and Michael is meant to acknowledge receipt of the message. Michael tries to mumble out some explanation that it's not his phone, but a rental mix-up. The phone goes dead. The phone rings again. The voice is friendlier now, explaining he got the wrong car: it was meant for an undercover policeman. Michael is relieved he's not in trouble. The detective gives Michael directions to drop off the Minivan and get another vehicle. Michael gets lost, the minivan gets stuck on a bumpy dirt road. Michael struggles to get the vehicle out of a ditch, having to really give it some gas. The minivan pops out of the ditch. But as it does, the back seat flips forward -- something rolling out of the trunk! A woman, bound and gagged. He pulls off her gag. Weak but with enough awareness to see Michael is no threat, she tells him she's been kidnapped, she's got to testify in a major corruption trial. Without her testimony the prosecution has no case.' And car chase goes on and on and on.

For those unable to find anything else on the On Demand channels, this will pass the time – but it is definitely headed for obscurity.

Grady Harp
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Most of all, boring
siderite19 May 2013
My wife liked the film, but I can't rate it as average or above for at least three reasons. One is that the film is rather boring. It is more like Phone Booth or other movies with a single character that does everything in the movie, with little or no real acting from other people. In this case the cast was so small as to call this a Point of View movie. The second reason is the trailer and casting, both designed to make the film seem something that it is not. They used the actor from Fast and Furious, then they showed a lot of car action scenes. Those are really not what the movie is about and they are not even that great. And I loathe bait-and-switch. The third reason has to be the sound montage. Loud special effects together with low volume speech alternates with loud shouting or music, making the film really hard to enjoy.

Bottom line: even with a bit of Die Antwoord music at the end of the film, this was a boring and hard to enjoy experience. The story itself was good, actually believable, but it was too little for such a mess of a production. Oh, and Naima McLean is pretty hot.
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Only one vehicle is really visible in "Vehicle 19"
StevePulaski2 December 2013
I admire what first-time writer/director Mukunda Michael Dewill attempts to do with Vehicle 19, however, I'm unable to recommend his attempts to the masses. Instead, I'll limit my recommendations to only the most optimistic film-watcher or one, like myself, who feel they need to pay some respect to Paul Walker after his untimely death. The film concerns Walker's Michael Woods, a fugitive in the United States evading prosecution in South Africa, where he picks up a rental car and is meeting up with his girlfriend. However, plans are put on an abrupt hold when he discovers a gun, a cellphone, and a woman tied up in the back seat of his car. An incoming phone call on the cellphone makes clear that this rental car was intended for another person, but by then it's too late; Michael is now trapped in a cat and mouse game with a mysterious voice on the phone and law-enforcement that he can't escape. Add a random and surly woman in his backseat into the mix as well.

It was just a few days back that I reviewed Courtney Solomon's Getaway, a horribly incoherent, messy action film, whose camera always seemed to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. In Vehicle 19, however, Dewill attempts something different with his car-chases and it's something I believe could be executed very well. Dewill keeps the camera on Michael in his car at all times. I can't immediately recall a shot that was stationed outside of the vehicle, even during the car chases.

This move in a genre dominated by slick and flawless scenes of car-chases and action in films today is a risky one - one that I admire and respect - but one that fails to do the film any particular justice. Getaway's issue was that its camera never seemed to be in the right place capturing the right thing. Vehicle 19's issue is that by keeping the camera in the car at all times makes it next to impossible for us to see what is happening outside, where the other members of this car chase exist. During the chase scenes, we are solely focused on Walker angrily trying to drive, yelling at the woman tied up in the back, and trying to fulfill the demands of the man on the other end of the phone. My guess is that Dewill wanted to capture this with boiling tension and to do that he thought it'd be best to keep the camera on Walker's character the entire time even as things became heated. Again, this is a decision I admire but do not necessarily like in this particular film.

Another issue with this kind of style is that Dewill wants us to sit through the tedious elements of Vehicle 19 that are captured through this kind of suspense tactic. The first fifteen to twenty minutes are nothing more than a frustrated Walker stuck in traffic, yelling at pedestrians, trying to find ways around a congested highway, and repeatedly telling his girlfriend he'll be there in time. Then when the chase scenes are finally sprung upon us, Dewill's practice becomes akin to watching a car chase in a rearview mirror.

This style also results in a heavy weight on Walker's shoulders as he must carry the film for almost the entire runtime since the camera almost never leaves him. He accepts this challenge, but he clearly struggles to give Michael Woods a character with more emotional depth rather than one victim to the asinine requirements of an action movie.

Vehicle 19 in many ways reminds me of Solomon's Getaway more-so than its unique, if unsuccessful way of filming action sequences. Both films concern a person thrown into circumstances beyond their control, given orders by men on cell phones, accompanied by a female companion in the vehicle, and both films are concluded by an ending of questionable satisfaction. Paul Walker led a selfless life and showed skill as an actor who performed well when his character was under stress. Vehicle 19 attempts to show that but fails to show the source of his character's because it would involve exiting the vehicle.

Starring: Paul Walker. Directed by: Mukunda Michael Dewill.
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A lot more slow paced than the 'FAST' film series but interesting and entertaining enough.
Hellmant3 September 2013
'VEHICLE 19': Three Stars (Out of Five)

Paul Walker (who's most well known for the immensely popular street racing/car heist franchise 'THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS') stars in another car-chase movie. This one is a mistaken identity film about a recently paroled criminal who accidentally gets in the wrong rental vehicle and becomes wanted by corrupt police. The film was written and directed by South African filmmaker Mukunda Michael Dewil and is set (and filmed) in his home country. It's Dewil's second feature (after the 2011 South African thriller 'RETRIBUTION'). The movie is really low budget and a lot more slow paced than the 'FAST' film series but it's interesting and entertaining enough.

Walker plays Michael Woods, a man who was just recently released from prison and has just got off a long flight into South Africa (as the film opens). He picks up his rental vehicle and realizes it's the wrong one (it's a minivan). He soon realizes it also has a cell phone and a gun in it. A man keeps calling the cell phone, thinking Woods is someone else, and Michael later finds out that he's a corrupt police officer (Gys de Villiers). He also later finds a woman (Naima McLean) tied up in the trunk who has information that she really needs to get to authorities. The corrupt police will stop at nothing to get their hands on her and Woods is unwittingly the man who can help.

Paul Walker is just 'the wrong man, in the wrong place at the wrong time'. He's definitely no John McClane, Walker doesn't have anywhere close to the amount of charisma and action hero presence as Bruce Willis does, but the directing is decent. Dewil's script is routine and pretty unoriginal but he gives the movie some nice subtle style and I liked that it wasn't in too much of a hurry or too action-packed. It might not be the movie that some viewers are expecting but to the right audience it could be a pleasant surprise. One of the things I really liked about it is it all takes place inside the van (from start to finish). That's pretty unique for a car chase action film!

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Nice try, but not A-list enough
bowmanblue10 December 2014
Paul Walker, unfortunately for him, is, at best, a 'B-movie' actor. Being cast as the leading man seems to be quite a stretch for him, however, as we can see here, he does try his best.

In Vehicle 19, he plays a man, freshly released from jail, who picks up the 'wrong' car in a foreign country. Unfortunately for him, a corrupt force of police want its contents and - guess what - our Paul isn't in the mood to give it to them.

The film's major plus point is that it's short. That may sound harsh, but the story - from what little there is of it - benefits from not being dragged out too much. Plus Mr Walker has less to do.

The film mainly involves Paul Walker driving - very fast - around foreign locations as he tries to evade one detachment of baddies after the next, until he finds himself up against the head honcho.

It's not bad, but then it's nothing special either. You've probably seen a thousand movies like it (and a thousand better ones and a thousand worse ones, too). If you fancy a 'no-brainer' car chase-type film then give it a go, just don't expect too much from what Paul Walker does with his time in between Fast and Furious flicks.
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Paul Walker in a car but he is not Fast or Furious. This is more Transporter like but not as exciting. Hard to get into. I say C+
cosmo_tiger19 June 2013
"There was a mix-up. That car was meant to be picked up by one of our undercover police officers." Michael Woods (Walker) flies to South Africa to see his girlfriend that he hasn't seen in a long time. When he gets to the airport there is a problem with the rental car agency and he grabs another car just to get to his girl as fast as he can. While driving he receives a call from a stranger telling him the car was not meant for him. When he finds a woman in the trunk with a secret that can take down the entire police force Michael is forced into a situation he is not used to. I have to admit that I am not a Paul Walker fan at all so remember that in this review. For the plot and idea of this the movie was pretty slow moving. Do not expect a Fast & Furious type movie. This is more like the Transporter, but slower. The entire movie, except for the first few minutes takes place entirely in a car. Normally that doesn't bother me, but this just didn't have enough action to keep me interested in the one shot. Overall, to me Paul Walker was neither fast nor furious in this, and neither was the movie. I give it a C+.
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Paul Walker is quite solid, but this is a waste of time in all honesty.
callanvass9 October 2013
Warning: Spoilers
(Credit IMDb) A foreign traveler (Walker) unknowingly picks up a rental car that will tie him to a web of corrupt local police.

Paul Walker has proved he can be a good actor. His performance in Running Scared was fantastic, and while I would never consider them great performances, he always has presence in a Fast & Furious movie. Staring in STD junk like this, is not going to help his career what so ever. It starts off well enough. We get an exciting car chase, but it's a prelude of events to come in the end. Most of this movie literally takes place in a minivan. Paul Walker rarely ever gets out of the van. It was a potentially intriguing idea, with poor execution. I actually didn't mind it at first. I was really enjoying Paul Walker & Naima McLean (Rachel Shabangu, the kidnapped woman in the car) chemistry and banter. But just as I really started to get into it, her character disappears, and it all goes to hell. I soon became very bored, and the villain (Detective Smith) talking on the phone all the time, became somewhat tiresome. The ending is especially inane. It felt entirely pointless after witnessing the ending, and did nothing but anger me. As I said, Paul Walker is pretty good here, but he isn't enough to make this anything more than mediocre.

Bottom line: See it if you must, but don't expect anything remotely worthwhile, other than the first 30 minutes or so. I would definitely skip this one if I were you. It's just not worth it

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Paul Walker's one of the last movies
Reno-Rangan16 May 2014
Very simple concept in which whole story takes place in a car. This low budget movie was not actually a bad. It is one of the last movies of Paul Walker. He was excellent, though the movie was B due to the poor production quality yet quite enjoyable.

Paul Walker as Michael, an ex prisoner who goes to meet his girlfriend who is in a foreign country. All the sudden he gets trapped into some local criminal affair without his knowledge. So the hunt begins where he tries his best to escape it.

The movie was not for everyone, you can get better movie than this though I must be honest that I saw it because of Paul Walker.
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Paul back behind the wheel in a different vehicle
videorama-759-8593915 December 2013
If anything, Vehicle 19, is just an entertaining flick to pass 85 minutes of your time. I agree, being set in Johannesburg gives it a refreshing atmosphere, but really this vehicle is just standard quality fare. The story is pushed along by instances, though carried by it's situation in it's mediocre story, even the reason behind it, involving sex trafficking, which has now been done to death. An African girl, a prosecutor who can put a lot of bad cops away, including the chief of police, has wound up in the boot of Walker's new rental. She's tied up. The unsuspecting driver of the rental is being set up, hence ex-con Walker's dilemma. He's already violated his conditions of parole, by leaving the country to meet his love, which at a glance, seemed Asian. It's good to see the late Walker, again the star of a vehicle. this time in a foreign country, after impressing us in Hours. He's not as good in this, between passable and good. You probably expected from watching the preview, it was gonna be action all along, with Walker outrunning and thwarting authorities, but I hate to break it to you, different land, different movie. As for it's ending it wrapped up all too quickly and neatly, but does have an intense moment in a showdown between the corrupt chief of police and Walker. And of course, being a Walker flick, we're not surprised to hear rap music play over the end credits, prior, a long expanding shot of the Hertz rent a car premises. Impressive. Just something on the side, for Walker to do movie.
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A shame this stinker had to be one of Walker's last few films
jtindahouse10 January 2014
I was very saddened, as was everyone, by the recent passing of Paul Walker. He may not have been the finest actor around, but he had charisma and screen presence. He seemed to love doing movies involving cars as a central theme. Unfortunately this may have skewed his decision on deciding to do 'Vehicle 19', because not many could debate this was a blight on his career.

The first thing that must be mentioned is the grim view it portrays of Johannesburg, South Africa. From what I understand of the place (having never been) what we see is quite accurate to how things really are, but it just felt as though the quantity it was shown in was overkill. There were constantly people coming up to cars with knives demanding wallets, or kids coming up and distracting from one window while another child steals things from the other window, or even people driving by a pulled over police car and throwing things at it before driving off. Just a few examples of things that just kept coming up and were for the most part completely unrelated to the story and held little relevance to anything. Perhaps writer/director Mukunda Michael Dewil had a bad experience there once?

The writing is lazy throughout. The opening scene shows Walker's character in a car chase trying to avoid the police. The screen then pauses and we are shown the word on the screen "earlier". I don't mind beginning a movie with a scene that takes place later in the piece, but the scene needs to provide at least some intrigue or mystery. This movie is called 'Vehicle 19', it wouldn't have taken a genius to work out there would be a car chase in it at some point. The set-up is incredibly lazy, to the point that no explanation is even attempted as to why Walker's character is given the wrong car in the first place. The characters make incredibly unrealistic decisions throughout which makes it really hard to have any empathy for them. Naima McLean's acting was near unwatchable. Walker himself does what he can with a terrible script and terrible actors to work off. I was actually impressed with the effort he put in. I'm sure he realised pretty early in the piece what a shocker he'd signed on to, so it can't have been easy.

It's a real shame this movie has to stay on Walker's résumé, especially in the latter part of it. He had some pretty good movies in his time, 'Joy Ride' being a personal favourite of mine and of course the 'Fast and Furious' series. Of course no actor is clean of the odd shocker so it'll be forgiven. But I plead with you - if you get the urge to go and rent/buy some Walker films to remember him by just skip over this one.
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An interesting premise that loses itself in the delivery
juneebuggy16 March 2016
This was okay if somewhat bland "action thriller" Set entirely in Johannesburg, South Africa it follows Paul Walker (sigh) as he becomes the target of a massive police manhunt after picking up a rental car with a female whistle-blower locked in the trunk.

The film does an excellent job showing the ins and outs of the city, while slowly revealing the plot as it goes along, which was fine with me, I like figuring things out this way. The entire movie has been shot and takes place inside the rental car, its an interesting premise, along the lines of Colin Farrell's "Phone Booth" unfortunately Vehicle 19 loses itself in the delivery and I'll admit that this film had trouble holding my interest for the duration.

Walker does a decent enough job with his (mostly) one man show, he's brooding, a sort of anti-hero type. There are some okay action scenes too considering the limitations of his character never leaving the minivan, in fact he doesn't even stand up, remaining seated for the duration. There are a couple of car chases through the city streets but this is no 'Fast and Furious' with an obvious low budget and despite the fact that its been dubbed a "nonstop thrill ride" its really not. 2/22/16
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A Man With A Knack For Being In The Wrong Place.and/or Movie
AudioFileZ6 May 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Vehicle 19 starts off with an American being chased by the Police, cars and a helicopter, through a gritty large urban city, in Jamaica possibly? The man seems desperate and in quite a bad situation. The present action ends with what appears to be an impending possible crash by use of a fade-out with the caption: "Earlier".

So, "earlier", the protagonist named Michael gets into his airport rental which is problematic as it apparently isn't the vehicle he requested. Being already late and apparently seeking to renew a troubled life and relationship he calls a woman who he is to meet. This movie is already playing on the modus operandi of giving almost no back-story excepting there has been trouble in Michael's life, likely of the criminal kind, and he is in a far place hoping for a renewed relationship with his significant other (who turns out to be his wife who is employed at The American Embassy). Audibly, as we yet have no idea who the woman is, a phone conversation transpires in which she warns Michael not to let her down again - to which he says he will not. He repeats "stay out of trouble" several time over to himself as he drives. Funny, the writers feel it is important we know that trouble will ensue by ramming it home...Wow, thanks!

As Michael drives everything seems "off". He gets lost and in stuck traffic. A call to the woman who he is meeting underscores just how "hanging-on-a-thread" the their relationship is as she mentions a reference to if he has stopped for liquor implying myriad trust issues. Good, now we can have a "doomed" love story undercurrent!

While waiting in traffic, a wolf casually strolls by his rear-view mirror between traffic. Spooky? Things are definitely off in this place. Two kids pull a "grift" on him as he waits. Things ramp up for the worse. He resumes his trek to meet the woman, Angie which turns out to be his (estranged?) wife, but not only is he still lost, but he finds a gun under the seat and he gets a phone call from a mysterious mobile phone planted among the things in the car. After this he decides to just dump the car and it's contents, but a second call convinces him that there was a legitimate mix-up involving an under-cover police person for who the car was intended. He is to meet the police to simply exchange the car. While the viewer now has a feeling of a story coming together you're still as "lost" as the Michael character is as he tries to find his new destination. This movie purposely holds back hoping to build suspense. Even realizing he will get a "tongue-lashing" from Angie, Michael calls her to get directions to his car-exchange destination. She is told she has to trust him and to not ask questions. She acquiesces because you know she just loves the punishment by her one "true" love has already given...And, now there promises to be more good times ahead!

Just as Michael receives Angie's directions (possibly alluding to much more than how to get to "Smut" street) things get much worse. A tied-up woman emerges from the back seat area. Things build toward maximum strangeness as Michael is almost shot and another call, from who Michael believes to be the helpful police, exposes that whoever these people are they know that he has broken his parole and are not the trust-able kind of police. The passenger is a public official about to expose corruption inside the government and she believes she is to be eliminated at whatever cost. The chief of police is heading a major sex-trafficking ring. Now, after a bit of painful slow build-up, a story is starting to develop.

The meeting goes wrong just as expected. Michael and Rachel, the kidnapped public prosecutor, escape...Yeah, that was expected even though they were outclassed in manpower, horsepower, and firepower. Did we expect anything less? Not exactly, plus we get a dumb fierily car crash by one of the chase vehicles. There is much more unbelievable evading the police to be done however, so apparently even though Michael's wife is "safe" inside the U.S. Embassy he becomes a man on a mission with nothing to lose. This could be a decent, if already done, story...But, somehow the trek to the outcome isn't believable enough to "grip" the viewer with the suspense the movie aspires to create. It's just a depressing and far-fetched ride to the "big" ending.

Even if the first part of the movie was built on a slow, sometimes painfully, reveal. We now get, more or less, the standard running for your life from just about everyone. The great effort to build a slowing evolving bigger and bigger suspense seems to fail due, primarily, to the quite unbelievable evading of the police and living through it. I guess a Chrysler mini-van is suppose to make that more difficult or something? All in all, though watchable not particularly a good movie within the genre of an suspenseful drama with action. In the end it rates no higher than a 4 in spite of Paul Walker's serviceable (i.e. decent yet not saving) acting hampered by an extremely tepid screenplay.
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A commendable effort on trying albeit the lacking execution
Seraphion27 September 2014
Warning: Spoilers
The story is just another one of those common action movie plot; the main character being trapped thus have to clear his name through the perilous path. The mentionable thing is that the movie, staying true to the title, tried to make all the shots angled from inside the car. Seeing Locke (2013) before this movie, I understand that it would be very hard to grasp all the scope that an action movie offers while trying to compensate the car interior camera angle. There's the big trade off between the action outside the car and the interior feel this movie's trying to get. The story also miss out much on developing other characters besides Michael Woods. At least Paul Walker can keep his kind of usual role of a hard raised man being the unintentional hero.
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bob-rutzel-11 August 2013
American Michael Woods (Paul Walker) is recently out of prison and needs to see his former girlfriend who is in Johannesburg, South Africa. He rents a car there and discovers there is a gun, another telephone and a woman (Naima McLean as Rachel Shabangu) tied up in the trunk. What is he getting into? What is going on?

The above sounds like an interesting scenario, but here's the thing: the camera work in the beginning for the longest times was always too close to his face. We needed to see the long view, at times to let us see the larger picture in the area Michael was in. And, the director had him hesitating too often when something happened. We, I think, would react and not reflect on things at those times. One more thing, the director has him going berserk at times within the confines of a small car. Really? Not good. Okay, to be fair, everything got better when Rachel came on the scene, tied up as she was. Up to that point this was careening to a D or F rating.

Basically, the story has to do with police corruption and Rachel is the key to uncovering everything. And, it is here you discover that Naima McLean as Rachel is a very good actress and you decide to stay with this a little longer.

Oh, the other thing that almost seemed to be a problem was that they drive on the left side (read the wrong side. Ha!) of the road. As he starts off he is on the right side and almost gets clipped. From a message on his telephone, he is told to ride on the left side. Wouldn't that have been mentioned in the rental office considering he is an American who is used to driving on the right side? Was this comic relief? From what? This thing just started. Not funny. In fact, the only thing that could have gotten a better rating was some humor sprinkled around. (don't you think humor would have been hard to do as this was too serious a problem?) Hmmmm……… I suppose so as Michael's main goal was to see his girlfriend who complains (during their telephone conversations) that he always messes things up between them and he wants to change all that. This could have been a one-act play as the whole movie was shot inside the rental car number 19. Maybe that was the funny thing. HA!

The rest of the movie is the car chase and that needed work. A lot of it. But, to be fair again, as mentioned before, this got a lot better when Rachel came on the scene (5/10)

Violence: Yes. Sex: No. Nudity: No. Language: Yes, not much
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I got ripped off by a taxi once, which was a better experience than taking a ride in Vehicle 19
quincytheodore15 February 2015
It becomes clear within the opening fifteen minutes that Vehicle 19 is fundamentally flawed. There's not much logic in the plot and it really needs audience to suspense their disbelief. Having Paul Walker doesn't help in the slightest as he's given so little to work with, not to mention there's no merit in cinematography as it's almost entirely shot in that one car. The overcompensating music is loud enough for monster truck.

Michael Woods (Paul Walker) is a former convict, he goes to Johannesburg to see his loved one. Unfortunately, he takes a wrong car from the rental, containing some illicit packaged stashed inside. This revelation will plunge him into the city's conspiracy and corruption. Now most people would freak out if they find spiders on their cars, but Michael Woods chooses a different unnatural reaction. It's unclear if Paul Walkers was still engrossed in his Fast and Furious character and thought he could drift the trouble away or he's channeling Jason Statham's character from Transporter.

Heck, even Transporter had the audacity of presenting goofy action, Vehicle 19 wants you to take it seriously as thriller despite the highly unrealistic script. This makes me wonder how the script got passed in the first place, why there was no one proofread it, point to a certain scene, any scene for that matter, and express how implausible it was. Furthermore, half of it is rambling and random shouting, but the characters still go along with the absurdity.

There is not much development as it progresses, only stifling dialogues, strange change in behavior and a few unbelievable occurrences. By the time it reaches halfway point, the movie produces a numbing effect. The use of Johannesburg as setting is actually a good decision, it's exotic and adds to the atmosphere. However, since most time is spent on the car, it brings little value in the end. It's not like this is Collateral where the production incorporate the scenery into an integral part of the movie, it just drives by aimlessly.

The end is just as bad, so without spoiling anything, it's not worth tolerating the entirety of the movie. Vehicle 19 is bound for junkyard.
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Different, with great use of a exotic foreign country
OJT5 October 2013
Being very different from the trailer, I still found myself enjoying this thriller very much. It's very unconventional, something I really enjoy. After watching a ton of movies over the years, I love to watch something new. This is!

We meet a guy out on parole after killing someone in an accident, going to Jo'Burg, South Africa, and going to be there on a scheduled time, meeting his wife at the American embassy. But things go wrong off right after landing on a delayed plane. He gets the wrong car by Hertz, where there are two car rented by the police. He finds himself in an awful predicament, and is soon hunted by corrupt police. But being the son of a sadist, the corrupt police has "picked" the wrong guy to frame for a crime. Paul Walker is great, acting very solid.

I like the South African touch here. An American coming to a very different and exotic country, where he immediately finds himself not knowing anything. This is fresh film making, and far from your average stupid Hollywood flick.

Don't listen to the haters here. They were probably expecting a Fast & Furious rip off or lookalike movie here. This is nothing such. It's a rather exceptionally different thriller. Not everything is 100 percent believable, but still it's way better than a lot of others.
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