Flashy cars, fantastic crashes can't save Fast & Furious

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

Paul Walker and Vin Diesal in Fast & Furious

Gazette File Photo

PAUL WALKER AND VIN DIESEL SIMULTANEOUSLY COMING TO THE REALIZATION THIS MOVIE SUCKS. What Fast & Furious offers in flashy and ridiculously expensive cars, it lacks in unique storylines and believable acting.

Fast & Furious
Directed by: Justin Lin
Starring: Paul Walker, Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez

2.5 stars

“Just like old times.” Walker and Diesel are back for the fourth installment of the high-octane series that brought street racing and import cars to the mainstream.

Fast & Furious is set between 2 Fast 2 Furious and Tokyo Drift, with all the original characters from the first movie coming together due to some untimely circumstances. Known for high thrills, sexy models and a complete lack of regard for traffic laws, the latest chapter in the franchise stays true to its form " but maybe a little too much.

The opening sequence shows what Dom (Diesel), Letty (Rodriguez) and Han (Sung Kang) have been up to since the first movie " that being hijacking fuel trucks to sell to the black market. After an intense hijacking with Letty almost losing her life and the police slowly cracking down on them, Dom decides that the risk for the people he cares about is just too much and leaves for Panama on his own.

Han decides to check out Tokyo, because of the “crazy shit” that’s going on there, and Letty leaves for L.A. However, some time later, Dom gets a call from his sister Mia (Jordana Brewster) and learns that Letty has been murdered.

The movie then flashes over to Brian O’Connor (Walker), cop-turned-renegade-turned-FBI agent, chasing after a gang member through the streets of downtown L.A., to find the name of the person who is supplying drivers to drug cartel kingpin Braga (John Ortiz) and bumps into Dom. It’s here where the two are forced to work together again, and things aren’t as entirely as they seem as they get deeper and deeper into Braga’s web.

Fast & Furious is fast-paced, but there is no real fury in it. For one, the characters seem bored. Brian and Mia’s romance is also a joke " they haven’t talked in five years after Brian forced all of Mia’s close friends and brother to flee or end up in jail. Mia takes him back in a heartbeat without any real reason.

The cars in the movie are magnificent. Subaru donated seven of its new Impreza WRX STI models to be used in the movie, custom-fitted by renowned after-market company VeilSide. Car fanatics or not, audiences will be awed by the sheer number of impressive cars in the movie, but also cringe at every expensive car that is smashed and destroyed.

That being said, Fast & Furious doesn’t lack momentum. However, with its predictable storyline and lack of any real acting by its leads " even with Diesel’s return to the franchise " there isn’t enough to pull the movie across the finish line.

Share this article on:

Facebook | DiggDigg |

Copyright © 2008 The Gazette