Alright, you’ve seen the trailers, you’ve watched the tv spots. Now you’re trying to decide whether or not you want to make a trip to the theater and pay to see Furious 7.
Well, let’s cut to the chase here.
There are explosions. There are fast cars. There are beautiful people. There are beautiful people in amazing fights, some while in fast cars.
What’s it about?
After of the events of Fast & Furious 6, a member of the team has been killed…way back in the third movie, Fast and Furious:Tokyo Drift.
Remember the villain of part 6? Well his big brother is now after the team. He is hunting them down one by one. And the seeds for this sequel were planted way back in the third movie.
Because of twists and turns like this, Furious 7 will be the most fun for those who have seen the previous six movies. Inside jokes abound. There are cameos from people who were in the earlier sequels only briefly. The story from this movie is even directly related to things that happened in two of the previous films.
For those who have not seen any part of the Fast and Furious saga, you will have fun. The most important part of what you need to know will be explained somewhat. But trust me, you’ll want to have seen parts 1 through 6.
And if it’s morbid curiosity of how new Director James Wan and the cast was able to complete production after the death of Paul Walker that gets you in the seat, you still won’t be let down. Whatever technology was used to digitally insert the late actor’s face over his brothers’, who served as stand-ins, it worked seamlessly. Only once or twice did I notice something odd about his face that made me wonder if it were, in fact, someone else.
There are even a few surprises in the cast that marketing seemed to forget to mention. I won’t ruin it for you here, but I was genuinely surprised to have an actor that I wasn’t expecting show up and become a major part of the plot.
Also, in a series where the cars are just as much the stars of the screen as the actors, Furious 7 does not disappoint. We have the armored buses, off-road vehicles (the sky counts as off-road, right?), and many different versions of Dodge Chargers, which, by now are a required appearance. We are also introduced to a Lykan Hypersport in a particularly tense scene of chaos that will leave viewers gasping for breath.
Is there anything bad about the movie?
Well, it’s definitely not perfect.
I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Furious 7 has a bit of a slow start. Where most entries in the series have almost literally started with a bang, Furious 7 begins in the aftermath of what would have been amazing action sequence that we never get a chance to see. I don’t mean to nitpick but I really wish I could have seen what happened.
Another mainstay of the series have been scores of scantily clad women. Before, they always seemed to be background dressing, only taking up the foreground in passing. But in Furious 7, the camera seems to linger on various body parts just a little too long. Almost to the point where it becomes uncomfortable. Watch the encounter at Race Wars. You’ll see what I mean.
Despite whatever banter was being thrown back and forth among the team, every member has always been a vital part of the mission at hand. Not so, in Furious 7, one particular member has drawn the short straw and seems to be only there for comic relief. I won’t say who, but you’ll figure it out rather quickly.
One last issue with the movie: You can’t help but wonder, looking at the stunts, whether or not some of them are just too much. There are car crashes here that would kill a normal person. But the ones involved walk away with nary a scratch, usually jumping immediately into a knockdown-drag-out fight as if nothing happened.
For those of you who have seen the rest of the series, you know that each movie has consistently continued to ratchet up the action with each iteration to the point of ridiculousness. Up until now, we’ve had drift races down mountain roads. We’ve seen cars dragging a vault full of money through a city, destroying buildings and an entire police force on the way. We’ve learned that Vin Diesel can fly. And we’ve also learned that a cargo plane is no match for a group of determined cars.
So does Furious 7 sufficiently up the ante?
I’ll put it this way: Furious 7 not only jumps the shark, it jumps down its throat, stabs it to death from the inside, makes sushi out of it, then eats said shark while looking for another shark to jump over.
In all seriousness: YES!!! Go see Furious 7. Go see it on the biggest screen possible. Find the theater with the best sound system. But just go see it.
This past weekend, Furious 7 earned $143 million domestically.
And believe me, it earned every penny.
You will be entertained.