Director: Justin Lin
Cast: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Michelle Rodriguez
It’s not the best swap in the world. Two definite articles for a blonde guy and a bloke with no hair. But swap them they did, bringing back the cast of the first Fast and Furious to jump-start the franchise all over again. The tagline? “New Model. Original Parts.” Wow. Satisfied with their genius, everyone left the room at that point for bagels and frappuccinos, leaving the work experience boy to come up with a script.
So here comes cop Brian O’Connor (Walker) – he’s fast – and bad-ass baldie Dominic Toretto (Diesel) – he’s fast as well, or is he furious? – joining forces to bring down a mutual enemy (some drug person who killed Dom’s girl). Quite how they’ll do this is anyone’s guess. And anyone guessed right: by driving really, really fast. And really, really furious. Or something.
Reunited again, our lead couple are free to burn up the screen with their chemistry. (Note: They aren’t gay. They just like cars and being around other men covered in motor oil. And women too. Lots of women. And boobs. Lots - just in case you thought they were gay.) Counting down the time till their first on-screen kiss, they glare and grapple with each other in a manly butch way. Grrrr. Men.
But Dom’s too busy pouting – furious – to notice Brian’s attentions. So Brian gets off with Dom’s sister instead (ooo, feel the tension). Torn between straight-laced justice and the nitro-fuelled underbelly of street racing and crime, Brian is clearly a character with a lot of depth. “Maybe you’re not the good guy pretending to be the bad guy. Maybe you’re a bad guy pretending to be a good guy. Do you ever think about that?” asks Dom’s sis. Brian rubs his stubble, staring into the distance. “Every day.” Whoah. Deep.
Plot aside, let’s just cut to the chase: that’s what the film does. And the set pieces are pretty decent (despite the use of sat-nav), with car chases that easily outclass Quantum of Solace. Stretching from deserts to cities to abandoned mine shafts, the tyre-screeching, road-scorching races are guaranteed to get your inner Clarkson going. Kinetic editing (fast!) and constant explosions (furious!) – who could ask for more? Well, anyone with half a brain for a start.
Solid stunts and shiny vehicles make for an entertaining 10 minutes. The rest is just exhaust.