FAST & FURIOUS 6 (2013) : REVIEW
May 22, 2013
"You've got the best crew in the world standing right in front of you, give them a reason to stay."
Fast&Furious series are probably the longest wacky movie sequels ever made and yet it's still standing until now, thanks for the speeding and over-customized cars that attract most of boys (few men) ever lived. The first until fourth sequels were OK; as in real nice cars with some insanely good drivers (and some booty shakes in a slow motion as well). And the surprise came, unexpectedly, from the fifth movie, Fast Five. The expectation and stage rise higher because of that very installment and so much are expected from this movie; everyone wants this series to break the odds, as to say getting better in each following sequels. So, what can I say about this Furious 6 (that being said in the opening credits)?
After getting presented brief flashbacks and highlights from the five previous installments (which is somehow feels unnecessary but necessary for those who didn't follow the sequels, but then again, why watch a movie that has already been on its sixth installment? I mean, that's stupid, eventhough every sequels offer different schemes, but you have got to know the gang first right?), FF6 takes us to the new happy life(s) of the gang after their serious success on the million-dollar Brazilian bank job in Fast Five. They're now rich and happy; some can afford a ferrari and a private jet, and some are welcoming a newborn child to the family. Then, a sudden problem occurs after Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) 'kindly' asks Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) to help him catch a new gang in town, led by an ex-military badass named Shaw (Luke Evans). Dom refused at first, but after getting a sight of one of Shaw's henchman, who happens to be his long-dead girlfriend Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), he then voluntarily joins the mission, along with the old gang, primarily to save her.
FF6 is probably one of the dumbest movie I've ever seen. The plot is at the weakest and the script is up and down, mostly because of the story-telling of Dom & Letty's past relationship. The twists are quite forced : the revival of Letty is hard to accept and Riley's betrayal is uninspiring. Enough is enough to kill Letty in FF4 (Fast&Furious), no need to bring her back to draw mass to the theatre because the red-line doesn't work in mind. The stunt and hand-to-fist martial arts are indeed amusing, but somehow it feels utterly impossible. So does the really good driving skills (and those cars man, are they driving in 9 gears with 5 full cans of NOS?). Another thing : the jokes are not even funny (Shut up Roman! Yes, you have a broad forehead, deal with it! And no, I can't smell Hobbs, so I can't tell if he smells like baby oil or not). The humiliation of car salesman hits the limit; it's waayy too rude, even it doesn't deserve a bitter wince. Making Shaw and his team (which is the evil replica of Dom's gang, literally told by Roman himself) as the villain just doesn't work; an ex-military gone evil with ego all over him? Old stereo-type. The only good thing is that this doesn't come in 3D. Thank you Justin Lin.
Boy, does this movie make no fucking sense! We had been presented by the ongoing attacks on hijacked cars and buses in the previous installments, and now a tank and a damn plane? WOW, just wow. How about Shaw's batmobile-like car that looks ridiculously ugly and impossible to be created? And does the take-off lane really go on that long? How big the port is exactly? Oh, what about the grand stunt Dom performs on saving Letty from the collapsed tank over the bridge? Screw science and relativity. And gravity.
There're some disturbing plot holes seen in this movie. First, how does it take for me to be more like Mia (Jordana Brewster) who just gave birth to a newborn son and yet getting left by her husband while he's gambling his life out there to help his 'family' (and she's the one who encourages him for heaven's sake!), with no single phone call detected? And what's the point for Brian (Paul Walker)'s stunt back in LA, having a little reunion with his old police pal, tracking and miraculously handling an international criminal lockdown for what information? To what benefits? And how? Save the idea. And could Dom please drop the "He may be an O'Connor, but he's a Toretto" act? I get it, proud uncle he is, but I won't be there to watch your nephew grows into another manhunk like you and drive furiously like the rest of his family (except if Justin Lin wants to make one now). Another thing, I had had enough of hearing the word "family" as it is a big deal that somehow hooks them together, but isn't really showing what it actually worths. Their reason is shallow actually : to save Letty, because you never abandon your family, and that we're family and this is what we do. Is it worth sacrificing for?
I see a lot of K-Stew here, but with a touch of snob, brag and smirk. The acts are bad; even the cars show more expression than the characters. I had had enough with hunky (and bald) Dom with the smirk in a (never been washed) white T-Shirt, Brian's BLAH performance, Gisele (Gal Gadot)'s "I'm gonna seduce you" act with the no-reason smile, Roman (Tyrese Gibson)'s downright stupidity, and Han (Sung Kang)'s flat chipbags face. Hobbs better off as Dom's 'proportional' opponent and Riley (Gina Carano) is what kind of sidekick exactly? I have no idea. Letty is still as sexy and bastard-y as usual, but with more complexity and dumb confused-ness; not working. Shaw is a predictable villain, not terrifying and promising at all. He's just there to fill in his position, not to make a soul out of it. But, I do love Ludacris's performance as Tej; he seems to be the only one who got skill (with those computers and machinary) rather than impossibly good driving skill and pumped-up muscular fighting skill. And I also love Joe Taslim "The Raid : Redemption"'s performance as Jah, one of Shaw's henchman. His fight (martial arts, whatever) seems to be different than the others. Is it possible that he choreographs it by himself? Whatever, he's good. And he's Indonesian (quite proud).
There's one thing that excites me the most though : the little surprise at the very end of the movie. It makes sense now, how Tokyo Drift was far drifted from other sequels, because that supposed to happen after this very sequel and will surely expand in the seventh sequel (yes, Han is dead, and that's not a spoiler). It's interesting how every Fast & Furious sequels are constantly independent but also offers a piece of ongoing string that connects all the series. A plus side.
Finally said, Fast & Furious 6 is a full-packed muscular (and impossible) actions and drivings that is super fast it kills your brain cells. But it's also a lot of fun. If you're gonna watch it, turn off your brain first if you don't want to grow a wrinkle.