April 6, 2015
Rating: 4/5 sport cars
A man lying in a hospital bed with Ian Shaw [Jason Statham] standing next to him and nurses scared half to death opens the seventh “Fast and Furious” movie.
It would not have been a true “Fast and Furious” movie without all the expensive and beautiful cars, the diverse racing culture and Paul Walker.
Dominic Toretto [Vin Diesel] and what he consistently refers to as the only thing he has in this world, his family, face a war against a revenge seeking Ian Shaw, brother of “Fast and Furious 6” protaganist, Shaw [Luke Evans] and a group of terrorists that hope to gain control of the tracking program, “God’s Eye.”
Comedic relief was provided with slap stick jokes and catch phrases throughout by tech man Tej [Ludacris], the humorous Roman Pearce [Tyrese Gibson] and ripped military man Luke Hobbes [Dwayne Johnson].
Every scene carries action but is not likely to keep you on the edge of your seat. The traditional elements of “Fast and Furious” were included, except for actual racing. The only street race that did occur was disappointing, over in two minutes and had no significance to the story.
The movie revolved around the original characters and their future. Toretto’s ex-wife, Letty Ortiz, [Michelle Rodriguez] struggled throughout the film to regain her memories after returning to Toretto from Shaw.
This became repetitive and annoying since Ortiz had nothing to do with the plot until “Fast and Furious 6” since her appearance in the first film.
Brian O’Connor [Paul Walker] missed adventure in his life after settling down with Toretto’s sister, Mia [Jordan Brewster].
It was clear that several scenes with Walker were filmed with doubles for O’Connor, played by Walker’s brothers Cody and Caleb due to the unfortunate death of Paul in a car accident in November 2013.
Statham played a role that one would expect him to play; a guy that likes to beat up people and always has a bad attitude.
A cameo appearance from Kurt Russell felt forced and random as he played the head of an unknown government branch.
Although the movie lacked real racing, most of the film consisted of car pursuits featuring cars such as the Lykan HyperSport, a $2.3 million car, the infamous Toretto car, the 1970 Dodge Charger and Shaw’s Aston Martin DB9.
Director James Wan took an interesting approach to the fight scenes. The camera followed actors’ faces as they were slammed to the floor or thrown across a room.
Wan also attempted to piece together all of the “Fast and Furious” movies to make the timeline of the series clear. Scenes from “Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift” were included to introduce Shaw and his mission for revenge against Toretto.
However unrealistic the car scenes were, including parachuting cars out of airplanes, driving off of mountain cliffs and cars leaping through two skyscrapers, it’s entertaining to pretend that these car stunts could be a possibility.
“Fast and Furious” fans should see this for the appreciation of the series and out of respect for Paul Walker.
The film wraps up to relay the message of family first despite what they have been through and closes with “For Paul.”