There isn’t many franchises where you can say it gets better after the 5th movie. But having The Fast and Furious series move away from drag racing (yawn) to heist action was a smart move, as well as making the films more of an ensemble with characters from the previous 4 movies brought back as a super team. But after the successful results of 5 and 6 can Fast and Furious 7 match up?
Following on from the events of the previous installments Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) swears revenge on the fast and furious crew on behalf of his comatose brother Owen Shaw. And when Deckard takes down one of their own the gang realise he’s not making idle threats. But to find Deckard they need to work with a covert ops team (headed by Kurt Russell) to rescue a mysterious hacker Ramsey from a terrorist.
Like the last two films this is a fun movie with plenty of excitement and action, a lot of it ridiculous – particularly the stuff in Abu Dhabi – but that’s always been the appeal of these movies. As long as it’s done spectacularly who cares about the laws of physics or logic. The fight scenes are also cool, especially the opening one with Dwayne Johnson against Jason Statham, and Michelle Rodriguez’s fight in Abu Dhabi. Its great having the cast back together especially now in their 7th film as everyone knows their role by now and play to their strengths.
On the downside, I couldn’t care less about Ramsay and the God’s Eye McGuffin. Kurt Russell was a bit wasted and I would have liked more of Dwayne Johnson (although the scenes he wer in were awesome). Statham and Vin Diesel’s fight scenes, while well staged, get a bit repetitive as they constantly fail to kill each other three or four times.
Then there’s the ending. After Paul Walker’s death in 2013 halfway through filming I was wondering how they would end his character Brian’s story. A mixture of CGI and using Walker’s brothers as stand ins helped to complete the movie. What they have come up with is a touching tribute to Paul Walker. It was the right way to end Brian’s story. The song that played at the end was powerful and heartfelt. I couldn’t help but cry at it all.
Rating 3.5/5 – Overall it’s not quite as good as 5 and 6, but Fast and Furious 7 is a good movie, and a worthy tribute to Paul Walker