nerd review – FURIOUS 7

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The seventh (?!) FAST & FURIOUS still delivers. This entry in the franchise gives us a little bit of everything. We get the racing the first movie hooked us with, we get the heist stuff that 5 rebooted the series with, but we also get some new elements.

FAST 7 opens up into AVENGERS territory with full on special FX set-pieces. And emulates BOND and MISSION IMPOSSIBLE with one sequence feeling like a stealth spy operation.

FAST 7 doesn’t aim for logic or rationale. It aims  for fun and entertainment. It hits the mark. We get some of the most over-the-top action sequences to ever hit the silver screen. The highlight was a multiple car skydive (yeah, you read that right – take that POINT BREAK), followed by a long road chase with a long line of cars and a fully weaponized transport. This set-piece was just a long line of me saying “Oh shit” over and over.

It was during this segment where PAUL WALKER shined the brightest. He surfed a car, fought TONY JAA, ran atop a truck falling over a cliff edge, and jumped onto a drifting car. Walker’s character obviously takes a back seat for the rest of the movie, but this sequence was his most exciting.

Walker gets a fitting farewell however. The end is rather emotional. I suppose this series has always been about family. It was nice to have the characters demonstrate this clearly.

Somewhere in all that crazy action is a beating heart. Let’s get into some of those nutso fights and stunts…

JASON STATHAM is the main villain. His introduction was bold. We see the aftermath of what he’s capable of. I love how we just see the results. This is what our heroes will have to deal with. Statham’s best fight is probably when he takes on the Rock early on. It felt like a WWE match. I wish there was more martial arts here. Thankfully, that wish would be fulfilled by several other fights.

By the way… NERD ALERT 2000: I say STATHAM for the next TERMINATOR – as the big bad baddie.

Tony Jaa isn’t in the movie too much, but his scenes are totally captivating. He moves so quick. And I thought Statham was striking fast when he fought the Rock. Jaa burst onto the movie scene with ONG BAK, his Muay Thai Martial Arts skills galvinizes every moment. He blends smashing knees and flying elbows with Parkour flavouring. Jaa is kinetic and enthralling. It’s so awesome to see him in a giant Hollywood movie like FURIOUS 7.

The Rock doesn’t show up again until the end during a massive street chase involving a drone and a high-tech jet. And he brings his bad one-liners with him. Turns out all you need to take down a drone, is throw a Rock at it. This final action sequence is so ridiculous it made the car tower jump seem like a documentary.

While over-the-top, FAST 7 was still enjoyable. There are a few laughs along the way. And a good mixture of races, fights, and stunts.

JAMES WAN brings a new energy to the franchise as the director. His trademark shot here is a spinning / tumbling camera thrown with the characters – it’s like a whirling vortex of camera movement. It’s bold to disorient the viewer like this, but I feel this stylish technique really helped the action scenes feel intense.

RHONDA ROUSEY shows up for a minute to kick some ass. A lot of these new characters could use more focus. But the film seems pre-occupied with MICHELLE RODRIGUEZ and her bland story-line. The overall story is unnecessarily complicated. I’d probably have to write 1,000 more words to explain it, and what KURT RUSSELL was up to.

The plot seems to revolve around an important hacker played by super-gorgeous GAME OF THRONES co-star NATHALIE EMMANUEL. She provides the best eye candy of the film, showcasing way better curves than any of those million dollar cars.

FURIOUS films always manage to throw in some good scenery for the teenage male demographic – or the inner-teenage boy within us Gen Xers. 😉  FAST 7 seems to ditch the pit-girls in favour of their version of Bond girls. Um, thank you.

FAST & FURIOUS isn’t really about hackers or the God’s Eye Camera System or Statham’s baddie or… Let’s face it – the point of these movies isn’t to tell a story. The point isn’t to have compelling characters. The point of watching FAST 7 is to get our minds blown by crazy action. These films are really about fun. On that front, FAST delivered.

Turn off your brain, and enjoy one last ride.

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What do you think? Leave a comment below.

Did you think PAUL WALKER had a fitting farewell?

Did you want more of the Rock?

Would you like to see RHONDA ROUSEY star in her own action film?

What did you think of Statham as the baddie?

What did you think of VIN DIESEL & MICHELLE RODRIGUEZ’s storyline?

What do you think of the story? Did you like the hacker (NATHALIE EMMANUEL) plot and all that security camera stuff?

Would you like JAMES WAN to direct the next installment?

Did part 7 go too far over-the-top? Or include too many characters?

Did you want more IGGY AZAELA? Blink and you’ll miss her. Same with other cameos like GAL GADOT.

Did you enjoy all of those one-liners? I felt like I was back in the 80s.

So... What'd you think?

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