The Fate Of The Furious
Director: F. Gary Gray
Screenwriter: Chris Morgan
Cast: Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris Bridges, Nathalie Emmanuel, Kurt Russell, Scott Eastwood, Charlize Theron, Helen Mirren
Distributor: Universal Pictures
Rated PG-13 | 136 Minutes
Release Date: April 14, 2017
With each new installment of the Fast and Furious franchise comes a new definition of fun. That is especially true for The Fate of the Furious. For nearly a decade Dom and his family have gone through the perils of street racing, heists, and avenging a fallen family member. And though it has reinvented itself to stay fresh and contemporary, one thing about the franchise remains true: it’s all about family. But the strength of that bond will be put to the test when an act of betrayal forces Dom to cross everyone he knows and go on a high-stakes crime spree that could put the world in the hands of a dangerous cyber terrorist.
Of course, another constant for the film is the fact that it continually jumps the shark whenever the opportunity presents itself. And seeing how car technology has advanced, The Fate of the Furious shifts jumping the shark into high gear. Check out the full review below.
Now the plot of the film is thin and a bit convoluted, but to simplify it: Dom (Vin Diesel) is forced to betray his family when a shadowy cyber terrorist who goes by the name of Cipher (Charlize Theron) holds something against the patriarch of the group. So he steals high-tech objects from EMPs to the previous God’s Eye. Confused by his betrayal, Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) leads the family — Roman (Tyrese Gibson), Tej (Chris Bridges), Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) — while Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) are ordered by Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell) to pair up and stop Dom and Cipher at all costs and by any means necessary.
So it may be a little Dom-heavy considering he’s off pulling solo heists while his family is either far behind or trying to figure out what his next move is going to be. But it seems to be balanced out by Hobbs and Shaw constantly trying to out-macho each other whether it be by flexing their muscles or threatening to beat each other up in colorful and inventive ways.
It’s not as though you’d expect to see a well-thought story from the Fast franchise. A lot of it relies on the one-liners and fast cars. Sure it may be style over substance, but these films pull it off so well, it really doesn’t even matter if the story is good or not. However, it shouldn’t take as long as it should to reveal why Dom betrayed the family. drawing it out for as long as it did only make me lose interest. Still, when the reason is revealed it comes as a very minute shock.
Now The Fate of the Furious does pull a bit from its predecessors. So there are some story elements that are being recycled, but the spirit of the franchise hasn’t waned. Given that this is the eighth installment of the long-running franchise, story fatigue was bound to set in. After all, you can reinvent the series so many times before having to resort to being a time-traveling musical. The likelihood of that happening is zero to none, but as long as it can maintain those one-liners, the intense action sequences, and themes of family intact, this franchise will keep on going.
And for every new installment, the bar for jumping the shark is raised higher and higher. Sure there are only three action pieces involving cars whether they are racing or stopping a submarine, but they are so wild and outlandish that they can only come from a Fast and Furious film. And with new self-driving/self-parking car technology becoming more popular, it’s easy to see why this was utilized for this film.
Though it is tons of fun, the plot is razor thin. Even Cipher herself is a very underdeveloped character whose villainy never reaches its full potential. We hardly ever get to know the character outside the generic nefarious exposition that is posted on a computer screen. So when she does dark deeds it doesn’t come across as believable, even in a film that is full of unbelievable things.
That being said, The Fate of The Furious is definitely entertaining, even though it reuses certain plot elements. But the family doesn’t care about any of that. It’s going to be a problem sooner or later, and it’s up to the fans to decide when that time comes. But honestly, as long as it keeps jumping that shark in the Fast and Furious style that we all know and love, plus a few one-liners, the future of this franchise is safe.