Also known as The Fate Of The Furious…but not in the UK!
Well, they somehow managed to do an EIGHTH film in this franchise. Surprisingly…this is really good!
Vin Diesel puts in one of his best performances so far in this blockbuster. Following on from number seven, Dom and Letty are in Cuba while the rest of the team are off doing their own thing. Hobbs is enjoying time with his daughter and Deckard Shaw is incarcerated. But…then it all changes. Dom comes into contact with the mysterious Cipher (Charlize Theron) and is then seen to change alliances and go against his “family”. What could possibly make Dominic Toretto turn against his wife and his friends? Well…the twist isn’t a big surprise. But it does make for a few twists in this tale.
The movie does have some really big action sequences. How do you beat cars falling out of a plane or driving between two skyscrapers? You do a massive pile-up in New York and you have a f***ing submarine taking out a load of cars. The only downside about these big scenes is that they already were seen in the trailers, taking away some of the suspense of what will happen next. The comedy is definitely higher in this than many of the other movies, and you can feel there was some real emotion at the few mentions of Brian in the movie. The locations are well thought of and beautifully shot.
Then we have the characters themselves. Arguably, Dwayne Johnson’s Hobbs and Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw are big highlights of this film. They do carry the film on their shoulders and make up for Dom when he is working for the other side. Then there is the tension between the two in the first half of the movie, which does result in one of the best non-vehicle based action sequences the franchise has to offer. Deckard actually does become one of the more comical characters in the film, especially in the third act of the film. Also, you can’t help but feel bad for Michelle Rodriguez’s Letty as she has no idea why Dom has gone against the crew. Ultimately, Vin Diesel steals the show with Dom having one of his toughest challenges ever (I should mention Ludacris, Tyrese, Kurt Russell and Nathalie Emmanuel are still quite enjoyable. Even the last scene where Nathalie’s Ramsey manages to shut up both Roman and Tej is brilliant).
As I mentioned, this film is great. The Fast and the Furious franchise has brought some great villains to the front, and Theron’s Cipher is a formidable foe for Dom’s crew. While we know that Fast 9 and 10 are on the way, this makes me feel more hyped for the upcoming films given how the movie ends. There are a good few cameos scattered throughout and it’s good to have some knowledge on the previous movies before you go into this one. Not the best film in the series, but certainly a well-made movie with enough content to make you think “yes, I do want another one”. Paul Walker fans may have wanted number 7 to be the end, but just think of this as a start to a new trilogy with some new rules and it will sit a lot better with you. Look out for Helen Mirren, I do love that woman and she does make a great impact in her limited screen time (bring her back for Fast 9!). Finally, F. Gary Gray is a fantastic director and I hope he does make a return to continue his vision for at least one more part!
Final rating: 8/10
Written by Jonjo Cosgrove