Gasoline Alley is either an argument that Bruce Willis is the hardest working person in Hollywood or the laziest. Jimmy Jayne (Devon Sawa) is the prime suspect in a triple homicide. As he works to prove his innocence, homicide detectives Freeman (Willis) and Vargas (Luke Wilson) try to track him down. There is a lot of star power, most of which do their best to inject life into the script. Everything Sawa does is filled with energy and makes Jimmy an easy character to get behind. When he does things that are not completely on the up and up, it makes sense due to the circumstances.
Wilson does the heavy lifting in Gasoline Alley. He has the majority of the lines between the two detectives and does the majority of the investigative work. This may not come as much of a surprise since Willis is scheduled to appear in at least eight(!) movies this year. When you have that much filming to do things like fast paced action sequences or saying more than two sentences a scene can be a little more disposable.
At this stage in his career, former A-list star Willis has become something of a black hole. He sucks in everything. What makes things worse, is that he has proven himself to be a good actor. He is simply not trying anymore. If that is the choice Willis has decided to make for himself, that is fine. The problem is that he ends up bringing down the other actors in Gasoline Alley.
That being said, even Willis in his action star prime would be hard-pressed to save this film. There are some interesting lighting tricks, but the actual plot is constantly working against itself. Gasoline Alley teases lots of fun ideas, but does not deliver on any of them. Even the big twist at the end is telegraphed and half-hearted. Unless you are a Bruce Willis completionist – which gets more difficult with each passing month – there is no point in watching this.
Gasoline Alley in theaters, digital, and on demand February 25
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