Based on one of the most successful racing video-game franchises, “Need for Speed” is better in the hands of a controller than a big screen adaption.


Graphic by: Ryan Arnold


Street racer framed, wants revenge, wants redemption, and joins a cross-country race … blah blah blah. We have seen this all before.

“Need for Speed” recycles old racing movie ideas, giving us a bland and lifeless film adaption.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I am all for car racing movies as long as they are well made, including “Bullit,” “Drive,” “Rush,” “Smokey and The Bandit,” “Fast Five” and “Speed.”

Sadly, Aaron Paul (formerly known as Jesse Pinkman from “Breaking Bad”) stars as the lead actor in this mess of a film.

Paul, who won two Emmys from “Breaking Bad,” does just a half-baked job here (pun intended).

Here’s the plot: Tony Marshall (Paul), a street racer who just got out of prison for a crime he did not commit, wants revenge on his rival Dino Brewster (Dominic Cooper) for setting him up.

Now, Marshall wants to beat Brewster on his own tracks at the De Leon, a two-day cross-country racing contest.

The plot is clichéd and at times it becomes preposterous. While, cool and shiny cars overpower the rest of the cast.

Director Scott Waugh (“XXX” and “Act of Valor”) knows nothing about character development or a decent script and just focuses more on explosions and racing scenes.

Waugh tries to bring the game to life but it is excruciating to see and sit through.

Yes, at times it fills a need for speed but nothing else. We don’t care for these characters because they are left in the dust from the cars.

I would of rather have watched someone else play the video game instead of seeing this film.

“Need for Speed” gets last place with one and a half stars out of five.

* ½

By Ryan Arnold

Ryan Arnold is Arts & Entertainment Editor for MBU Timeline, as well as Web Administrator for the site. He is majoring in broadcast media and minoring in religion at Missouri Baptist University. Arnold runs cross-country and track and field at MBU. Arnold has always had a passion for film and likes to shoot and edit film. Arnold wants to have a career in video production after college. In his spare time, Arnold also runs his own blog, "Arnold At The Movies." Checkout all of my reviews at