'Tracers' ably moves Taylor Lautner into parkour action

Taylor Lautner's in fine parkour mode in crime thriller 'Tracers'

Imagine the "Fast & Furious" movies minus the wheels and you more or less have "Tracers," an action-crime thriller that swaps souped-up cars for some hardcore parkour with moderately engaging results.

Taylor Lautner is well cast as a New York bike messenger who literally runs into a young woman (Marie Avgeropoulos) who's a member of a gang of free-runners. (The efficient method of getting over, through and around stuff was memorably on display in the 2006 "Casino Royale" reboot.)

In serious debt, Lautner's character joins the athletic posse on high-stakes heists that grow more dangerous with each fresh assignment.

The role is a solid, post-"Twilight Saga" fit for the likable Lautner, who impressively does much of his own stunt work. Spanish director Daniel Benmayor has a firm grip on those energetically choreographed, high-adrenaline sequences.

Although there's something rather liberating about watching people ping-pong their way around Gotham's human gridlock, the film is constantly tripped up by a talky script that hits hard on parkour as a metaphor for overcoming obstacles.

As long as it shuts up and keeps moving, "Tracers" makes for a sufficiently diverting, not to mention zero-emission, vehicle.


MPAA rating: PG-13 for intense violence, perilous action, sexual content, language.

Running time: 1 hour, 34 minutes. Playing: In limited release. Also on VOD.

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