A Marine Vet Takes the Wheel in LA Heist Thriller ‘Ambulance’

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June 14, 2022
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In Michael Bay’s pandemic-era thriller, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II plays Will Sharp, a Marine combat veteran whose wife faces certain death if he can’t raise $210,000 for her operation. Unfortunately, Sharp’s only option is to join with his brother Danny (Jake Gyllenhaal) for a supposedly easy bank heist.

Things go wrong and the brothers hijack an ambulance and lead every variety of law enforcement on an extended chase around Los Angeles as they try to escape with their lives and the money. The movie is now available on 4K UHD, Blu-ray, DVD and digital after a theatrical release in April 2022.

Why is this a pandemic-era thriller? “Transformers” and “13 Hours” director Bay was tired of waiting around to make his next mega-budget extravaganza and instead took on a story he could shoot quickly and cheaply (by his standards). Audiences get real car wrecks with a minimum of computer effects.

This fast-and-loose approach required that Mateen do a lot more driving than most actors would be allowed to do. The studio premiered a clip with Screen Rant that talks about the risks the production took to put an actor behind the wheel.

The most spectacular footage in “Ambulance” was shot with the latest drone cameras piloted by young drone hotshots that Bay recruited to the production.

The Blu-ray featurette “Making Noise” shows exactly where the director is coming from. Seeing the guy behind big-time Hollywood car crashes map those out on the sidewalk using Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars should be inspirational to the 8-year-old kid inside every adult moviegoer.

Bay loves to work with spec ops guys on his movies. He’s hired military consultants whenever he can and cast veterans in small roles in most of his movies. This time, he’s brought back former SEAL Remi Adeleke, who appeared in Bay’s movies “6 Underground” and “Transformers: The Last Knight,” as one of the LAPD Special Investigation Section (SIS) officers trying to capture the robbers.

Is “Ambulance” a military drama? Not exactly. Will Sharp couldn’t do the things he has to do to save his family if he didn’t have military training, and no one else on the heist team has the strength of character that Sharp obviously learned in the Marine Corps.

The movie does feature some of the best car chase sequences in movie history. If that’s your thing, don’t miss it.

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