THE FRANCHISE FANS
Yes. I’m THAT person who has never seen a Fast & Furious flick until now. I thought going in that I had seen at least one of them. Nope. It was clear in the first 30 minutes when I realized everyone on screen clearly knew one another, that they’d been hanging out for several years and I was clearly the new kid in the room. I had no idea who Dom (Vin Diesel) was or Deckard (Jason Statham) was or Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) or Mia (Jordana Brewster.) I visually recognized these actors along with Dwayne Johnson and Kurt Russell. But I certainly didn’t understand whose funeral they were attending. I knew who Brian was because I read the news. Paul Walker’s untimely death half way through filming nearly put the brakes on this 7th in the franchise. But it didn’t. Brian lives on.
LET’S CUT RIGHT TO THE ENDING
Through the amazing technology of computer generated graphics and the love and generosity of Paul’s brothers the 7th in the series was completed. Once the cast had time to mourn his death in 2013, it was decided to reorganize the script, and finish the project by super imposing Paul’s face over his brothers’ who clearly sound a LOT like their late brother. With great taste, film maker James Wan (known for horror films not action films) and writers Chris Morgan and Gary Scott Thompson came up with an ending that in no way resembles the real life ending of Paul Walker – a fiery car crash.
HOW TO SHOOT CARS FALLING FROM THE SKY? VERY CAREFULLY
It doesn’t take long to understand that the hard core Fast & Furious fans haven’t been showing up all these years for the story. They’ve been showing up for the very fast cars. Suped up cars have never done much for me. Muscle cars and muscle men have never been my thing. So the revving of engines, screeching of tires and over the top RPMs did little to keep my attention. I impatiently waited for THE scene – cars falling out of airplanes. We had all seen it in the trailers and wanted to find out how it turned out. The free-fall worked for me and I’m sure the sky divers will be happy to know it was worth it. When real cars were shoved out the back of a cargo plane photographers were airborne filming the cars while trying to dodge the huge objects falling from the sky. Hope they were paid extra that day! For the most part the scene worked though I didn’t believe any vehicle with that speed could ever manage such a hard landing and still race through a forest without hitting a tree! Come on!
TRYING TO SEE IT AS THE TANK HALF FULL I also didn’t believe a sports car could jump from one building to another AND another and stay in tact. I know. It’s the movies. The Fast & Furious movies and I’m not part of the club. But for those who will be coaxed into going, to spending their hard earned cash on this film plus the cost of popcorn and a drink, know that it’s hard to track, it’s short on humor (you won’t get the jokes) and it’s a bunch of high speed cars, crashes, and stunts with little time for heart and emotion between a bunch of people I doubt you’ll feel any closer to when it’s all over. Except one. And that’s because YOU have heart and emotion. God rest your soul Paul Walker.
Arruga! – 0
Fidget Factor – 1 (137 minutes. Time I will never get back.)
Age Range – 13 and up
Overall Grade – C (But what do I know. I haven’t seen the other six in the franchise either.)