Review: DRIVERX Does Not Deserve A Big Tip

FIRST IMPRESSION

DriverX has an interesting concept and a solid lead actor in Patrick Fabian, but doesn't know how to use them to create a cohesive film.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Writing
Directing
Acting
Technical Merit

DriverX is a new film written and directed by Henry Barrial and starring Patrick Fabian (Better Call Saul). In the movie, Fabian plays a middle-aged stay-at-home dad who must turn to part-time work in order to support his family. He discovers DriverX, a ride-sharing app, and becomes a driver for hire, experiencing the nightlife of Los Angeles and straining his family life even further.

The biggest issue with this film is that it can never decide what it truly wants to be. At points it is a comedy, but at other points it is a serious drama. Often it feels sleek and modern, but sometimes it feels futuristic and surreal. If the movie had stuck with one style throughout, it would have been much more cohesive and effective.

driverx fabian day

The film also has lackluster character development. The protagonist is never made to feel super likable. Instead, he feels super distant and detached. The movie tries to make him more sympathetic by giving him literal and metaphorical challenges to face, but these only serve to make him seem more whiny and annoying.

The supporting characters are even less developed. Each one fits a clear archetype that is used to deliver a single point to the story. The interactions between the supporting characters and the protagonist are sometimes amusing, but they don’t offer enough to make for a compelling story. Since the story is predominantly composed of these interactions, the film as a whole feels rather insignificant.

The scenes that are supposed to be futuristic are the most frustrating. There are only a handful of these, but when they occur, they are very noticeable and jarring. Although the ideas the movie presents aren’t particularly unrealistic, they are presented in a way that is confusing and unsettling. This makes the film feel somewhat ridiculous at times.

driverx fabian daughter

Although the characters aren’t particularly well-written, the actors all do a good enough job in their roles. Fabian is solid in his leading role. He does add some emotional nuance to the role that makes the movie slightly more interesting. Melissa Fumero (Brooklyn Nine-Nine) and Oscar Nuñez (The Office) both have extended cameos that are somewhat interesting, but don’t fully take advantage of their comedic chops.

Overall, DriverX was a mostly disappointing film. Despite a relatively strong lead performance, the story is so inconsistent that the movie ends up feeling tiresome and far longer than it actually is.

DriverX is in theaters and on demand beginning November 30.

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Sean Boelman
Sean is a film student, aspiring filmmaker, and life-long cinephile. For as long as he can remember, he has always loved film, but he credits the film Pan's Labyrinth as having started his love of film as art. Sean enjoys watching many types of films, although some personal favorite genres include dramatic comedies, romantic comedies, heist films, and art horror.

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