Michael Bay’s latest action thriller, “Ambulance,” is exactly what one would expect from a Michael Bay film—an overly dramatic plot with heightened crises and resolutions, peppered with fatal explosions and aerial swooping camera shots. The story this time is of two brothers, Will and Danny, who set out on a difficult bank heist that is intercepted by police, and they finally have to take hostage an ambulance with an EMT and patient inside. Despite unnecessarily dragging itself for over 130 minutes, and the usual complaints against a Bay film aside, this one does seem to have its moments and pace, and is not too bad for light, mindless action entertainment.
‘Ambulance’ Plot Summary
Distinguished US army veteran Will Sharp lives a life of financial struggle as he is turned away by every medical insurance company for experimental surgery to treat his wife’s cancer. The couple also have a very young son, and Will promises his wife to stay out of trouble and look for an honest job. But he soon contacts his adoptive brother, Danny, who lives a flashy life and owns a high-class garage in uptown Los Angeles. Behind this business, though, Danny is a big-time criminal, following in the footsteps of his father, an infamous bank robber. Although Will asks for a loan of 231,000 dollars, his brother instead offers him a much larger share of the proceeds from a 32-million-dollar bank heist that he and his crew are about to conduct, in exchange for his participation as part of the crew. Will vehemently disagrees at first, and also tries to stop Danny from getting into such big trouble, but thoughts of his ill wife and baby son soon convince him to roll in with the gang.
Emergency Medical Technician Cam Thompson is supposedly the best EMT worker in all of Los Angeles, and she has a moderate time helping her rookie co-worker Scott settle into the job on his first day. Together, they drive their ambulance towards a violent car accident site, and Cam bravely provides support to a young girl impaled by iron fences as she is rescued from inside the car. Despite having to be so emotionally invested in her job, Cam does not get affected by any of it by now, as she casually tells her partner that she really does not care what happens to the young girl after she has been taken to the hospital. On the other hand, police officers Zach and Mark discuss their personal lives as Zach tells his partner of his interest in a bank teller, and Mark drives him to the bank, encouraging him to ask the teller out. What they don’t know is that the very same bank is being robbed by Danny and his crew at that very same time, and also that LAPD’s Special Investigation Section has already been eyeing Danny and is standing-by close to the bank to respond to any emergency.
When Zach walks into the bank, Danny poses as the manager and lets him in, but the officer soon realizes what is up when he notices that Danny does not know his employees’ names. However, this is too late as Danny was already prepared for this, and he takes Zach hostage. Soon enough, Mark notices what is going on inside, and a gunfight quickly starts. SIS and other LAPD officers rush to the scene, and an extensive shootout ensues, which kills all of Danny’s gang members other than him and Will. The army veteran does not want such a bloodbath because of their actions and tries to defuse his brother’s plans when Zach tries to attack Danny. In a moment of reaction and defense, Will shoots Zach in the leg and is immediately remorseful about it. When Cam and Scott respond to the emergency and take Zach inside their ambulance, the van is stopped by the two brothers; they throw Scott out and pose as medical technicians, and drive the vehicle out of the premises as a way of escape.
What Is Danny And Will’s Plan Of Escape?
Sometime after Danny and Will drive past check posts in the ambulance, the police realize the ploy, and SIS Captain Monroe instructs his team to track down the ambulance with the help of police helicopters deployed in the sky and promises Mark to bring his partner back to safety. What follows is an extensive cat and mouse chase between the robbers and the authorities as police cars drive around town following the ambulance, but not attacking it because of the hostages inside. Meanwhile, Cam keeps providing emergency treatment to the injured police officer, and Will also readily agrees to help by donating his blood. After a while, though, she realizes that Zach has been losing way too much blood, and the only way to save him would be to operate on him and remove the bullets from inside him. Although she acknowledges that she is not a doctor, Danny is not willing to listen as the experienced criminal has realized by now that their hostage policeman needs to be kept alive as he is their way out of trouble. Had Zach not been alive, the police authorities would have been much more aggressive in their approach. Danny connects Cam to a surgeon (who is her ex-boyfriend) via video call, who then further connects her to trauma surgeons. She is also assisted by Will, who has medical training from his days in the army, as she removes the bullets from Zach’s body and also manages to avoid complications after his spleen ruptures. Throughout all this time, there are moments when Danny wants to get rid of the EMT, but Will’s insistence on keeping her safe keeps him at bay.
Anson Clark, an FBI special agent, is called into the scene, and the man reveals to Captain Monroe that he personally knew Danny at one point in time. Years back, when he was getting his doctorate degree in criminology, Danny was one of his classmates, and was sent there by his criminal mastermind father to understand police departments and how FBI agents work. Anson makes contact with Danny inside the ambulance via radio communication, but the latter is too clever to work out any deal and clearly suggests that they are not going to stop the ambulance as long as the pursuit is on. Danny calls up Papi, the leader of a criminal gang that his father had close ties to, and asks for help with escaping the police in exchange for 8 million dollars from the heist. Papi agrees, and together they work out a plan in which Danny and Will would drive their ambulance to a certain place under a bridge by the Los Angeles river, where Papi’s crew would be waiting with reinforcements. The place also serves as a parking lot for off-duty ambulance vans, and Danny’s plan is to confuse the cops with numerous ambulances leaving the spot at the same time. They work according to plan, and finally, reach the intended spot after surviving an explosive police chase. The criminals then let out ambulance vans as decoys while the real ambulance, now spray-painted in green color, drives away from any trouble. Papi’s gang also equips one van with detonators and drives it into a police roadblock before opening fire on the cops with a remote-controlled car setup, killing Captain Monroe.
Danny and Will drive into Papi’s secret warehouse, and Will asks Cam to stay inside the van guarding Zach, who is back to consciousness by now. The brothers then go to meet with Papi and hand over a bag with eight million dollars in it. But the mobster is informed about the presence of a police officer and an EMT inside his secret space, and he is vehemently unwilling to let them walk out. On the other hand, Will does not want either Zach or Cam to die, and promises to save them even if he has to fight against Papi’s gang. Seeing the potential threat to his brother’s life, Danny pretends to have a fallout with him and then shrewdly leads Will to a gunfight, wiping out all of Papi’s men and the mobster himself. Gunfire ensues as they return downstairs to the van, inside which Cam has now armed herself with a police pistol that Zach found under his leg. At this point, Will suddenly opens the backdoor of the van, calling out Cam’s name, which startles Cam, and in a similar moment of defensive reaction, she shoots Will in the chest. Although Cam feels terribly sorry, she does not reveal that it was she who shot Will at Danny, knowing well that the man would instantly kill her if he got to know.
‘Ambulance’ Ending Explained: Why Did Will Shoot Danny?
Danny now frantically drives the ambulance towards a hospital while Cam provides emergency treatment to Will. The police once again pick up their tail as they now drive on open roads again, and Anson still tries to bring the situation under control. The ambulance van finally comes to a stop inside the hospital premises, and it is quickly blocked by police cars and vans on all sides. Danny goes to the back to try and think of a plan to save his brother from death, as Will is visibly dying very quickly, and he now discovers Zack’s gun and believes that the police officer had shot Will. Cam quickly intervenes in his attacks and admits to having shot Will, although mistakenly, and is now being held hostage by Danny. The man is enraged by the situation, and promises to kill Cam outside in front of everyone, as he knows that he would be killed anyway. However, as he opens the van’s door, Danny is shot from behind by a struggling Will, who by now realizes that the only way to stop more bloodshed is to kill his brother. Danny falls dead on the ground as Will cries out in pain and grief; police officers handcuff the injured man and leave him on the ground while they attend to Zach and Cam. Despite the advice of Anson, Cam heroically rushes over to Will to try and save him, and convinces the officers to take the man inside the hospital. She then sees Will’s wife and son in the crowd and goes over to talk to her. She gives support to the wife as she tearfully apologizes for her husband’s actions, and then secretly puts a large stack of money into her baby’s carrying cot, as she had been asked by Will. In the end, Will is seen to be recovering, although he is in police custody, while officer Zach admits that Will had saved his life. Cam wastes no more time and now finds out about the little girl she had earlier saved from the accident scene and goes and meets her in her hospital ward.
Will had actually never wanted to be embroiled in any such violent and criminal activities, but it was his helpless situation and his brother’s persistence that made him do it. Despite having been involved, he did not wish for any more loss of life and constantly protected Zach and Cam from his brother’s whimsical plans to kill them. By then, he is able to make Cam realize his situation and asks for her help in providing the much-needed money to his wife. Will does not hate his temperamental brother Danny either, for the two have a lot of good history together, right from childhood, but at the end understands that more innocent lives would be lost if he does not stop his brother. He ultimately performs the difficult act of shooting his brother, although it might be argued that he should have done so much earlier in the plot.