Featured image for review of Ambulance on Sean Kelly on Movies


Two robbers steal an ambulance after their heist goes awry.

Two brothers hijack an ambulance after a bank heist goes awry in Ambulance. William James Sharp () is a military veteran, who is desperate for money to pay for cancer surgery for his wife Amy (Moses Ingram). Desperate, Will goes to his adoptive brother Danny () for help and ends up being recruited into taking part in a $32 million bank heist. However, the heist is thwarted with the arrival of the Special Investigation Section of the LAPD and, during the escape, Will shoots police officer Zach () and Danny ends up hijacking the arriving ambulance, along with paramedic Cam Thompson (). With Cam tending to Zach in the back, Danny and Will go on a high-speed chase across Los Angeles, with both the LAPD and FBI in tow.

Ambulance is the latest film from action maestro Michael Bay, which is a remake of the 2005 Danish film of the same name. The film stars Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (Candyman) and Jake Gyllenhaal as semi-estranged adoptive brothers Will and Danny Sharp, who are reunited when Will comes to Danny to ask for money for his wife's surgery. Danny instead asks Will to take part in a bank heist, despite the former's intentions never to be involved in his adoptive family's criminal lifestyle. However, the robbery goes awry and Will and Danny end up going on the run in a stolen ambulance with $16M in tow. With both LAPD Captain Monroe () and FBI Agent Anson Clark (Keir O'Donnell) on their tale, Will and Danny end up speeding across the city looking to make a desperate escape.

It has been nearly three decades since Michael Bay made the transition from music video director to the guy that is pretty much synonymous with high-octane action filmmaking. In many ways, Ambulance is a film that sees Michael Bay try to return to his R-rated Bad Boys heyday after spending most of the last 15 years making five Transformers movies, with only the only films made in between being 2013's Pain & Gain, 2016's 13 Hours, and 2019's 6 Underground.

For better or for worse, Ambulance ends up being pretty much the most Michael Bayest Michael Bay film in quite some time, with the film featuring pretty much everything that the director is known for. Jake Gyllenhaal's Danny Sharp is a very prototypical Michael Bay character, who is simultaneously an unlikeable scumbag and someone the audience is expected to root for at times. However, the true protagonists of Ambulance are Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Danny's more level-headed adoptive brother Will Sharp and Eiza González (Baby Driver, Hobbs & Shaw) as the very conflicted EMT Cam Thompson.

Despite the bulk of the film being an extended car chase, arguably the most memorable sequence of Ambulance is an extended (and incredibly graphic) scene of emergency surgery in the back of the ambulance, with trauma doctors talking Cam through the procedure via video call. The sequence is equal part ridiculous and shockingly violent, which pretty much sums up Michael Bay in a nutshell.

At this point in his career, Michael Bay is probably not going to make any new fans. As such, Ambulance is either going to be a film that you dig or take away as an example of cinematic excess that will leave you bowing your head in shame.

Trailer for Ambulance

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Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly is a freelance film critic and blogger based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.