This series is quickly turning into my movie-going guilty pleasure.
I wasn’t at all a fan of the first trilogy – which seemed to be squarely aimed at car-lovers and race-junkies – but the franchise has evolved into the leading action thrill-ride of the current generation.
Fast Five was comfortably the best so far, and this is just about as good – maybe coming a shade under the bar-raising fifth instalment due to it being completely ridiculous. But kind of gleefully so.
After escaping with more than $100m from Rio, Dwayne Johnson’s Agent Hobbs tracks down Dom Torretto (Vin Diesel) to help bring down an elite team – led by ex-Special Forces soldier Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) – specialising in high-tech vehicular warfare across the globe.
With Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) and Mia (Jordana Brewster) now sporting a baby boy, this gives Dom and his team – including regulars Roman (Tyrese Gibson) and Tej (Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges) – the chance to get back to the States by demanding full pardons for their past ‘misdemeanours’.
The twist comes in the form of Dom’s ex Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), who’s been enlisted into Shaw’s team after seemingly cheating death from the fourth part, in a sub-plot that’s nearly as ludicrous as some of the set-pieces.
But in-demand director Justin Lin – who was recently linked to a Terminator reboot – again shows he has an eye for action, by providing a popcorn-crunching summer blockbuster spectacle that does exactly what it promises.
Haywire actress – and former MMA fighter – Gina Carano (as Hobbs’ sidekick) sadly gives one of the most wooden performances ever seen on the big screen, and Johnson – who I am a fan of – is fast becoming a walking stereotype (complete with clichéd dialogue), but this Fast and Furious series just seems to work.
Diesel and his co-stars seem to get more likeable, despite this being the sixth part, and even though the last third is utterly inconceivable, it can’t help but bring a grin to your face – and in the right way.
For that reason it’is very hard to be too critical when it ticks all of the high-octane action boxes – with Diesel power and then some.
And movie execs know they’re onto a good thing – with the seventh instalment on its way as early as next year.
Now that’s fast . . .
Cast: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges, Jordana Brewster, Sung Kang, Luke Evans, Gal Gadot, Gina Carano, Elsa Pataky, Shea Whigham, Joe Taslim, Clara Paget, David Ajala, Kim Kold, Rita Ora
Running Time: 2hrs 10mins
Director: Justin Lin
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