So this weekend I visited the Fast and Furious franchise for the first time. This did not include the still-in-theaters Hobbs and Shaw, but I will get to that one. The Fast and Furious franchise has been around since 2001, has eight numerical movies in the series, with one spin-off (Hobbs and Shaw), and has two more movies in the works.
I absolutely loved these movies. Sure the first ones were difficult to get into, but ultimately most of these films showed a consistent storyline. They have a strong message of family, and finding family. Tokyo Drift is on its own little nook, but after watching through The Fate of the Furious aligns the movie within the franchise as a whole. The soft reboot of the franchise that occurred in Fast & Furious 4 is a good move, as street racing stresses people. Moving into more heist focused movies, with really cool vehicles, was a sound decision.
The family theme of these movies was pronounced. In a good way! The Fast and Furious franchise incorporates two proverbs together, and makes them flow beautifully: the blood is thicker than water proverb, and sometimes friends are family too. The family built together throughout each movie is so strong, and they know when it’s time to get down to business. Dominic (Vin Diesel) is the leader of the group and he points his family in the direction they need to go in. He knows when to pull them away without completely destroying the dynamic of the family.
So, what did I think of each of the films? My least favorite film was Tokyo Drift. It feels the most disjoint, despite the later movies connecting it to the franchise more. My favorite film was a tie between The Fate of the Furious and Fast Five. These movies were so brilliant, with Fast Five having Oceans Eleven parallels, and The Fate of the Furious just being crazy plain fun. My favorite comedic scene out of all of these movies had to have been Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) protect Dominic’s son Brian in the plane while killing bad guys. My favorite emotional scene had to have been all of Furious 7. Particularly the ending scene with Dom and Brian (Paul Walker).
Fast and Furious Rundown
The Fast and the Furious: 3.5/5
This film is a good introduction to the characters, but it is most definitely not the franchise’s best. I love the chemistry between Walker and Diesel, and how that carries through the movie, and then the franchise. The street racing scares the crap out of me though, and it ultimately pulls me away from the rest of the storyline
2 Fast 2 Furious: 4/5
This story held together much better than the previous iteration, but it definitely misses the chemistry Diesel brings to the stage with Walker. Tyrese Gibson is a tremendous addition to the cast though, and he and Walker are on fire. It almost makes me forget Diesel isn’t in this movie. Almost.
The Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift: 2.5/5
I see the original intention of this movie, but my biggest qualm is how it is still considered a joint part of the series. It is labeled as the third in the series, but actually happens after the sixth movie? This should have been reworked after the reboot of the franchise. Other than that, it’s a decent movie.
Fast and Furious: 3/5
This movie struggled between the previous street racing style and the soft reboot towards heists the franchise was moving towards. It’s phenomenal having Walker and Diesel back together again, but the two joining back together is the only good thing about this film.
Fast Five: 4.75/5
This film is definitely at the top of the list. Fast and Furious is this movie right here. The plot screams Oceans Eleven, and the addition of Dwayne Johnson is one of the better things this franchise has done. Walker and Diesel’s chemistry is definitely top notch here, and they move and act very cohesively in Fast Five. I love the heist, and the cool car vibe is just a perk. Can I say I also love the introduction of Gal Gadot into the franchise?
Fast & Furious 6: 4.5/5
The family vibe is strong in this movie. The cast is all well likable, with Michelle Rodriguez the highlight. She’s absolutely phenomenal and you can see her struggle to rejoin her family. But family is above all else, and the Fast family does everything in their power to bring Letty back into their fold. I love it. I did cry a little when we lost Gisele though.
Furious 7: 4.5/5
I cried during this movie. This movie was devoted to Paul Walker, and the cast and crew’s love for him. It turned Furious 7 into a saga on how to move on from losing someone. No one likes losing anyone, but it does happen. Sometimes the best lessons in life are learned from the entertainment we see. Sometimes the best way to to get through life is normalizing the tough things to talk about. And this move accomplishes it brilliantly.
The Fate of the Furious: 4.75/5
In this movie you can definitely see Walker’s presence is missed. But the rest of the cast makes up for it. This is by far the funniest movie, but also has some of the best action sequences (without the cars). Jason Statham is brilliant in this movie, and I love him protecting the new addition to the Fast Family and killing bad guys at the same time.
That’s that on the Fast and Furious series. What do you think about the franchise? Let us know in the comments below, or on Twitter, @fullcirclecine.