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Movie Review – The Fate of the Furious

TwitReview: The Fate of the Furious is an all out pedal to the metal, NOS infused, take no prisoners, FUN time at the movies. Carries on all that is beloved in this franchise. Grade: 5 stars!

It started with an undercover FBI agent trying to catch a band of street racers who were stealing high-end electronics (DVD and VHS players, LOL) has become a BEHEMOTH of a franchise for Universal Studios. The 8th time down the ole street race does not disappoint!

Who’s in it and which movie in the franchise did we see them in prior to F8?:

  • Vin Diesel as Dominic Toretto (FF 1, 3 [noted cameo at the end], 4-7)
  • Dwayne Johnson as Luke Hobbs (FF 5-7)
  • Jason Statham as Deckard Shaw (FF 6-7)
  • Michelle Rodriguez as Letty Ortiz (FF 1, 4 [mentioned], 5 [after credit scene via photo], 6-7)
  • Tyrese Gibson as Roman Pearce (FF 2, 5-7)
  • Chris Bridges as Tej Parker (FF 2, 5-7)
  • Nathalie Emmanuel as Ramsey (FF 7)
  • Kurt Russell as Mr Nobody (FF 7)
  • Scott Eastwood as Little Nobody (first appearance)
  • Kristofer Hivju as Rhodes (first appearance)
  • Charlize Theron as Cipher (first appearance)

What happens in this one?

A cyber terrorist named Cipher (Theron) recruits Toretto (Diesel) in her cause against world leadership by using his skills to help her steal weapons of mass destruction. Dom’s former team now under the leadership of Mr. Nobody (Russell) must track Dom and stop him and Cipher.

But what really happens? Care to spill the beans?

Writer Chris Morgan has kept this long running franchise fresh by reinventing the type of movie category this falls into. The first movie, The Fast and The Furious, was originally conceived as an uncover cop infiltrating a gang of street racers who steal high-end electronics movie. The franchise has morphed into many different genres along the way and each time adds more to the overall story of these characters and filling in the blanks of past movies along the way. The Fate of the Furious takes elements from this series and blends them with elements from the James Bond series, Diesel’s own xXx series, The Transporter, and manages to deliver a non-stop action movie that delivers some fun moments and never takes itself too seriously.

Dom turning his back on his family is played off in a way that is simple yet devious on the way Cipher manipulates him. The same is true of Deckard Shaw (Statham) as his character arch has gone from the surprise appearance at the end of FF 6 to the villain of FF 7 to now a hero in FF 8. Roman (Gibson) and Tej (Bridges) are still the comic relief while new addition Ramsey (Emmanuel) fits in with both as a partner and love interest. Letty (Rodriguez) is a bit softer in tone then she was in past movies but she still manages to kick-tail.

Cipher (Theron) is an interesting villain for this franchise as again the tone of the movies shifted from street racing gang stealing DVD players to drug lords to a warlord to now a cyber terrorist. She is logical and methodical and surrounds herself with a core group that follow her beliefs and ideas. I will that the weakest part of the movie was that her core group were nameless drones that were stereotypical of the “tech” genre. You had the nerdy girl with glasses and the Asian guy with blonde hair all working for her – essentially she got the rejects that were not in the last xXx movie.

How’s the action?:

The action is insane. You have cars falling from garages and being used as weapons. You have Hobbs (Johnson) pushing a torpedo from his speeding Jeep in the Antartic. You have Shaw and Hobbs breaking out of a prison and eventually working together and this sequence is crazy. Hobs has rubber bullets bouncing off of him while he is fighting his way to get to Shaw which was all part of Mr Nobody’s plan to recruit them. You have Shaw channeling some “Frank Martin” in a sequence that could be straight out of The Transporter.

Overall score?:

I loved it! The Fate of the Furious was insanely fun to watch and enjoy. As a fan of this franchise (and I’m one of the few that really likes Tokyo Drift) the 8th installment does not disappoint. I’m going all out and giving it 5 stars for the fun, popcorn flick that this is.

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