Michael Bay–three syllables that have become synonymous with action, style, and transformers. As a director, he’s been steadily cranking out kick-ass pictures every year or two since the mid-90s. He’s also a prodigious producer responsible for original and rebooted horror films including The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Friday the 13th (2009), more The Purgeand A Quiet Place franchises. Bay’s filmography is jam-packed with lens flare, explosions, and American idealism. Whether it’s his ’90s films or his contemporary creations, they’re riddled with humor, hope, and plenty of guns. His new movie, Ambulanceis no exception. Ambulance is based on a Danish picture by the same name. The official description describes Ambulance ace,
Over one day across the streets of LA, three lives will change forever. In this breakneck thriller from director-producer Michael Bay, decorated veteran Will Sharp , desperate for money to cover his wife’s medical bills, asks for help from the one person he knows he shouldn’t—his adoptive brother Danny. A charismatic career criminal, Danny instead offers him a score: the biggest bank heist in Los Angeles history: $32 million. With his wife’s survival on the line, Will can’t say no. But when their getaway goes spectacularly wrong, the desperate brothers hijack an ambulance with a wounded cop clinging to life and ace EMT Cam Thompson onboard. In a high-speed pursuit that never stops, Will and Danny must evade a massive, city-wide law enforcement response, keep their hostages alive, and somehow try not to kill each other, all while executing the most insane escape LA has ever seen .
With Bay’s penchant for financing remakes, it’s not surprising that he’d step up and direct one himself. The overly long trailer offers a look at arguably too much of the picture, but it shows a flashy, dramatic chase film starring two sizzling hot actors as the leading robbers. Collider’s review called the American remake one of Michael Bay’s best in years. For a breakdown of who is playing who in Bay’s latest, check out our cast and character breakdown below.
Danny Sharp (Jake Gyllenhaal)
Jake Gyllenhaal leads the picture as Danny Sharp. Danny is the spark that lights the flame. He entices his desperate brother into his bank robbery scheme with promises of a take upwards of $30 million. Gyllenhaal plays this opportunistic criminal with an electricity and humanity that makes him as exciting as he is sympathetic. In a conversation for a profile with EsquireGyllenhaal’s co-star Yahya Abdul-Mateen II said Gyllenhaal made the set his playground.
“There were times when he would take the camera from Mike [Bay] and then you look around and Jake is shooting the scene,” he said. “I had never seen anything like that before. I’m curious about those things, but I would never ask the director if I could shoot a scene.”
Oddly enough, this is the second Danish remake in a row that Gyllenhaal has starred in. He led the Antoine Fuqa (Training Day) American remake of The Guilty, which was released on Netflix last year. With double-digit acting projects lined up, expect to see more of Jake’s face over the next couple of years. Next up for Gyllenhaal is the action-thriller The Interpreter from Guy Ritchie. In fact Gyllenhaal seems to in his action star phase as of lately, having signed on to star in the Sam Hargrave-directed comic book movie Prophet as well as starring in the long-gestating road house remake from Doug Liman taking on the role originated by patrick swayze in 1989.
Will Sharp (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II)
Starring as Gyllenhaal’s brother is Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Will Sharp. Will is the straight man of the crew. He’s a man driven to desperation by excessive medical debt courtesy of the United States’ privatized healthcare system. When his wife’s surgery is accompanied by a $230,000 invoice, he heads to his brother Danny for some money. Will accepts his brother’s offer to aid in an armed heist that has a 50 percent chance of success–if the statistical information in the opening of Hell or High Water is accurate. Yahya had a hell of a ride over the last four years. After appearing in Aquaman, Us, black-mirrorand The Handmaid‘s Talehe starred as Dr. Manhattan in HBO’s watch men series. Last year alone he led Nia Da Costa‘s candy man and starred in The Matrix Resurrections bringing his own take on the iconic role of Morpheus. Fans can look forward to seeing Yahya Abdul-Mateen II reprising his role as the villainous Black Manta in Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom when it hits theaters in March 2023.
Cam Thompson (Eiza González)
Eiza Gonzalez shares the Ambulance with Jake Gyllenhaal and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as the EMT the brothers take as a hostage when they snatch the vehicle. González might not be a household name yet, but she’s been working with some of the most exciting directors in the industry including Edgar Wright (Baby Driver), Robert Rodriguez (Alita: Battle Angel), Adam Wingard (Godzilla Vs. Kong), and David Leitch (Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbes & Shaw). She plays Cam Thompson, an EMT who’s having a hell of a bad day when she’s brought along as a hostage. It was announced that González was cast in Extrapolations an Apple TV+ series about climate change along with a list of killer talent including Gemma Chan (Eternals), Marion Cotillard (Annette), Kit Harington (Game Of Thrones), Tobey Maguire (spider–Man), David Schwimmer (Friends), Meryl Streep (Don‘t Look Up), and Forest Whitaker (Black Panther). She’ll also be leading the big-budget Netflix series The Three-Body Problem from Game Of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and DB Weiss.
Captain Monroe (Garrett Dillahunt)
Garrett Dillahunt plays Monroe; the captain of the Special Investigations section of the LAPD who is hot on the trail of the two bank-robbing brothers. Dillahunt is a fantastic talent who has cropped up across a couple of Steve McQueen pictures (12 Years a Slave), Looper, No Country for Old Menand many more shows and movies.
Anson Clark (Keir O’Donnell)
Keir O’Donnell plays the FBI agent in charge of investigating the Sharp brothers and their crew. O’Donnell is a versatile dramatic and comedic actor featured in It‘s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Legion, Drunk Historyand Wedding Crashers.
For more on Ambulance, check out this featurette detailing how they achieved the wild cinematography for the picture. In speaking about capturing some of the drone footage in the film, the drone operator said,
“When I’m flying the drone, I’m acting like Superman, in a way. I’m trying to get these really unique angles and shots. I fly what’s called an FPV drone, and FPV stands for first person view. We wear a set of goggles on our face, and when I’m flying the drone, I’m actually flying it with a VR headset. I’m able to see exactly what the drone’s seeing in real-time. It’s a whole new arena for flying, and it allows us to fly really crazy locations and get some really awesome shots that you can’t get with any other camera or drone.”
Check out How to Watch Ambulance to figure out if it’s streaming alongside its theatrical release. Ambulance arrived in theaters on April 8, 2022.
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