I’ve always found Jim Caviezel a bit of an enigma acting-wise if I’m truly honest.

Thrust into the mainstream spotlight after his turn as Jesus in the Mel Gibson phenomenon that was Passion of the Christ, Caviezel has never really reached those heights again, preferring to fiddle around in forgettable fare such as Outlander.

In fact, the star has recently turned his hand to television work, and catching up with him at a junket for The Prisoner revealed Caviezel to be a quiet, unassuming guy who was very much the opposite of your typical Hollywood star.

Now the actor is turning up in straight to DVD fare such as Transit, an action thriller that you half expect to see fronted by some WWE reject.

But it isn’t – and is all the better for it.

The set-up is pretty simple – Caviezel (Nate) and family are heading through Louisiana on their way for a bit of family bonding on a camping trip.

However, their plans get thrown into disarray when their trip is hijacked by a gang of crooks, who hope to use the family to shepherd a ton of cash they robbed from an armoured truck, through a series of road blocks.

Wouldn’t you know it though, things get out of hand when state troopers intervene and soon Nate faces a desperate battle not only to survive himself, but also to save the lives of his wife and two sons.

This is a brisk romp, but with just enough characterisation to avoid being a simple cartoon-like adventure.

Caviezel’s Nate has a bit of depth – having been jailed for fraud – giving him an edge that most characters of this ilk lack.

And that frisson between the family members adds a neat layer to proceedings, which elevates the fare above normal DVD material.

Directed by relative newcomer Antonio Negret, the whole thing has a nice sheen to it – not surprising when you learn veteran producer Joel Silver had a hand in proceedings.

And there are a number of impressive set-pieces, starting with a nifty heist to open and a number of swamp-set chases.

There are elements of movies like Duel here, and although there is nothing really new on offer, the whole thing stacks up nicely.

Caviezel plays a man pushed too far neatly, and the goons, headed by James Frain, just about stay within the realms of believability.

Transit is far from a classic, but as a quick slice of cinema that is designed purely to entertain, it hits the spot.

About The Author

Simon Fitzjohn

Simon is a journalism tutor in London, who also just happens to be a movie fanatic, with a craving for the darker side of cinema. He has written two books, one on the horror films of director Bob Clark (2014) and the other on the history of the character Norman Bates (2015). His third book, on the work of British exploitation director Pete Walker, is due in 2017.