Life in the fast lane, pedal to the metal

Just one of the many ridiculous things that happened in this movie to make it great.

Remember Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift? If you don’t, it was the supposed end of the Fast and Furious franchise and a quick money-making scheme. If you told me the franchise would live on after that film, I’d laugh. If you told me the franchise would add another three films after Tokyo Drift, I’d laugh harder. If you told me there would be a seventh film in the franchise…well you get the point.

The Fast and Furious franchise has come back from the dead and has shown no signs of tapering. With the perfect formula of fast cars, attractive actors/actresses and the right blend of characters, Fast and Furious 6 was prime for success.

Let me make something clear. The purpose of these movies is to simply entertain. Therefore, like The Expendables franchise, Fast and Furious movies get a pass on the overall quality of the movie itself. To explain that further, Dwayne Johnson jumps from a car to another car, from a car onto a plane and from a plane to a car. All moved at a very high speed. He was all right though without even a scratch on him. But that’s fine. This franchise is allowed to suspend reality in order to increase entertainment value.

One of the things that makes this franchise interesting as it continues to connect all the previous installments. They already brought in the best characters from the previous movies. In this movie, they brought back a criminal from one of the first five movies and a few people that go along with that film (I’m really trying not to spoil the movie, but it will be difficult).

That being said, I do not like Letty. Maybe it’s because she is played by Michelle Rodriguez and I can’t stand that she has come back from the dead in multiple films. Do people like her that much that they demand she returns from the dead? If I were Dom, the choice would obviously be to just stay with Elena. However, the entire plot of this movie is centered on the Letty.

I don’t think I could call that a critic of the film. I just don’t like her. The only thing I could critique is that Letty should be dead. Also, UFC fighter, Gina Carano, would kill Michelle Rodriguez in a fight. Not injure, not knock out but kill.

Anyway, now that my Michelle Rodriguez rant is over, my one critique of this film is a little bit of a spoiler, so here’s your warning.

SPOILER!!!

The placement of Han’s girlfriend, Gisele, dying was extremely awkward. If I were in charge of the writing of this movie, I would have killed her off earlier in the film. To be exact, I would have killed when Han first saved her from the sniper bullet that had her name written all over it.

Instead, Gisele saves Han’s life toward the end of the film, but as a result she sacrifices herself. Han immediately exacts revenge (interestingly enough on the same person who tried to shoot with a sniper earlier in the film) by throwing him into the engine of a plane, which was awesome.

At this point, Vin Diesel triumphantly walks out of the flames into Letty’s arms. Meanwhile, we as the audience have to be happy that they were triumphant in their mission, but sad when Mia and Brian walk over to Han asking where Gisele is.

Furthermore, Roman Pierce doesn’t mention Gisele’s death in the closing prayer of the movie. Her death just wasn’t handled well. Nobody seemed to care that much in the film, but I cared and I think the audience did too.

Like I said, I would have killed her off earlier in the film and here’s why. If you kill her off early, the audience and characters get their grieving out of the way (And actually have a grieving period). Then Han gets the same revenge at the end by throwing his girlfriend’s killer into the plane’s engine. Then your closing scene is a complete triumph. Also, in my ending Roman would have mentioned those they have lost in the closing prayer.

However, no one on the Fast and Furious 6 asked me to proofread the script.

END OF SPOILER!!!

You know what. I’d like to discuss the during the credits scene, so sorry we’re going to have to reenter the spoiler alert.

SPOILER!!!!

I thought the scene during the credits was fantastic. It changes the entire perspective of Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift. Han’s death was no accident. It was in fact Shaw’s brother, Jason Statham, trying to exact revenge on Dominic Toretto and his team. I’m already excited for the next film. Statham is a great addition to the franchise with his experience in his previous film, especially The Transporter franchise.

Because of Fast and Furious 6 and the during the credits scene, I literally wanted to watch Tokyo Drift again, so I did. I pulled the worst movie in the franchise out of the depths of my movie collection (Yes, I own this movie. Yes, I enjoy Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift and you’d be lying if you said this movie doesn’t at the very least entertain you).

Believe it or not, Fast and Furious 6 made Tokyo Drift a better movie. First, it gives you more of an understanding of Han. Originally, Han was just a cool guy and easily the best character in Tokyo Drift, which is why they brought him into the fourth, fifth and sixth movies. Now you know what Han has been through and the reason he’s involved in a criminal organization in Tokyo. He needs to fill the void of his lost girlfriend, with whom he wanted to spend the rest of his life.

He stumbled upon Sean (Lucas Black), who is a racer who I’m sure reminds him of the family (Toretto’s gang) he left behind in the previous films.

Also, Vin Diesel has a cameo at the end of Tokyo Drift and calls Han family, the recurring theme in the last two films.

Finally, Dom not only came to Tokyo because of the death of Han, but also he needs to investigate Statham’s character and possibly recruit Sean so it will be interesting to see what they decide to do.

I give all the credit to the Fast and Furious 6 writers for doing their homework.

END OF SPOILER!!!

I’ve been writing forever and I still haven’t said much about why Fast and Furious 6 was a well-done film. However, look above and tell me if I liked this movie. I have analyzed it in great lengths. You don’t do that unless you were completed engrossed in the film. I also saw it twice in the theater and it made me want to watch Tokyo Drift again. It made the franchise more interesting as a whole.

One of things that is kind of minor, but it still jumped out at me is that Tyrese Gibson was hilarious. They did a much better job in Fast and Furious 6 with his character than in Fast Five. From the moment he showed up on the screen in his private jet that said, “It’s Roman, bitches.” on the tail, he provided comic relief whether he made the jokes or he was the butt of a joke. I was thoroughly entertained.

We all watch this franchise because it’s fun. We love the characters. We love the cars. We love the ridiculousness and after six films, it hasn’t gotten old. So as the lyric in the trailer says, “Life in the fast lane, pedal to the metal.”

THE BOTTOM LINE: Fast and Furious 6 thrives on the winning formula that made its predecessor great. This franchise will at least have a seventh film and rightfully so.

I’ll give Fast and Furious 6 4 out of 5 cups.

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As of June 2, Fast and Furious 6 made a domestic total of approximately $171 million versus a production budget of $160 million, according to Box Office Mojo.

Fast and Furious 6 has a rating of 72% at Rotten Tomatoes while users at the Internet Movie Database gave it 7.7 out of 10 stars.

To see the movie trailer for Fast and Furious 6, click here.

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About dukemich

Samuel L. Jackson
This entry was posted in movies and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Life in the fast lane, pedal to the metal

  1. CMrok93 says:

    90% of the time, a sixth movie in a franchise means that it’s going to suck and it’ll ruin the franchise. It turns out, there are exceptions. Nice review.

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