Having become a household name thanks to his iconic role as Breaking Bad‘s Jesse Pinkman, which also landed him three Primetime Emmy wins, Aaron Paul’s first move after leaving the meth world behind saw him trying his hand at becoming an action hero in video game adaptation Need for Speed.
From the outside looking in, it was a questionable decision when the genre’s long history has hardly been littered with classics, but director Scott Waugh’s pedal to the metal action thriller was a lot more successful than most people probably remember. In fact, Need for Speed is one of the most profitable console-to-screen translations ever made, racing to a solid $203 million at the box office on a $66 million budget, before generating in excess of $10 million from DVD and Blu-ray sales during its first month on sale in the United States.
As you’d expect, reviews weren’t exactly stellar, with critics and audiences both turning their noses up at Need for Speed to the tune of respective 22 and 57 percent scores on Rotten Tomatoes. There’s some decent vehicular chaos to be found along the way, but it’s hard to get invested in such a patently ludicrous plot, one that finds Paul’s mechanic framed for a crime he didn’t commit and sent to prison, before he seeks revenge upon his release by taking part in a cross-country race that finds the law hot on his tail.
It’s nonsense, then, but perhaps not nonsensical enough for iTunes subscribers, who’ve taken it upon themselves to revisit Need for Speed in great enough numbers to see it land on the platform’s worldwide watch-list, per FlixPatrol.