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Duo Review – Fast and Furious 7 – Too fast?

Pete Fast and Furious movies are one that hold a spot in my heart. It was always fun and entertaining and I’m sure a lot of people agree with me. With the unfortunate death of Paul Walker, development of the film was halted and many presumed the end of an era for the Fast crew. However, with some movie magic, they brought Walker back for one last time. Was it worth it? From a monetary aspect, I’m sure they will do just fine. For me, I’m on the fence. I enjoyed the movie but I spent most of my time picking up on stupid little things.

With the movie franchise moving towards a more realistic approach from cars with 18 gears and an engine to rival a 747, I expected a little more common sense in this instalment. Dropping out of a plane in cars happened, it was tested in WW2, slamming your parachute on while at terminal velocity was not. Its moments like these that can be extreme fun if done correctly, but with it being the majority of the release trailers, it lost that charm in minutes. There are many of these moments that are so incredibly stupid and over done to the point of exhaustion. Hit in the head with a wrench? Get up. Have 30 tonnes of concrete dropped onto the lower half of your body? walk into prison and this sort of whacked out shit goes on and on and on.

So avoiding the blatant WTF’s and moving onto the ‘story’. Once again, we follow Toretto and the gang who have pissed of Owen Shaw’s big brother. He gets angry and is on a man hunt to kill them. Toretto crosses path with some CIA black ops guy to find hacking software that can monitor everyone in the world and give their location for man-hunts. Save the hacker, use the tool. Simple but surprisingly good for a franchise known for its corny one-liners and story. It went in a direction that we couldn’t have expected and for once, had a mix of actual enemies rather than The Rock and drug pedallers.

Fast 7 was shot beautifully and often you couldn’t tell the difference between the CGI versions of Walker although the rest of the CGI looked ripped from the latest top of the line show coming from Syfy. I’d say it was a fitting tribute for him. I’m still trying to come to terms with why the child threw out a Red Porsche toy car. Was it simply coincidence or a dig at the car?

The Fast franchise is always poorly acted and I’m almost sure Vin Diesel cannot whisper. Nothing new there then. So, what are you waiting for, get on down to your local, enjoy mindless entertainment with a half-decent story and help fund the next 18 movies in the franchise. My rating for Fast is 7.

Dan  Before entering viewing mode for the newest film in the overlong Furious franchise, I have always created a check list that gets mentally crossed off during the course of that particular offerings’ runtime, with Furious 7 being no exception. On that list includes, scenes of the camera focusing intensively on rather attractive women wearing barely anything at all. Check. Scenes of cars driving along long, open roads whilst “gangster rap music” plays over the top. Check. Scenes where the law of physics is completely disregarded whether by cars or just humans themselves. Check. You might get the idea that Furious 7 filled my mental check-list completely, yet surprisingly this did not prevent it from being actually quite fun and probably one of the best entries in the Furious series so far.

Firstly, the film is completely bonkers. It did a good job in reminding me how fun it is to cause absolute carnage on rampages on GTAV, with the latter stages of the film seemingly being just that, with unlimited amounts of collateral damage to buildings, cars, ambulances, civilians, drones, all being displayed on screen whilst simultaneously having the time to show The Raid style hand-to-hand fights, and a battle sequence taken straight out of Street Fighter. And I loved it. It has been a long time since a film has been so completely ludicrous that you forget the major plot holes and chances to say, “he wouldn’t survive that”, and just let it ride on, destroying completely everything in its’ path.

In terms of criticism, the film is way too long and easily could have removed the sequence in which the team head off to Abu Dhabi, which seemingly was only there to showcase the Lykan Hypersport, which in itself to be fair, kind of symbolises the entire film. It’s ridiculous (I mean you can get diamonds in the headlights), it’s unbelievably quick (240mph), but is also a wonder to behold. The film also concludes in a fitting tribute to the late Paul Walker, and I think I can say honestly say, who would have been thrilled with the finished product. Peace out. 7/10

Overall Score: 7/10

Fast and Furious 6 – Review – SPOILERS-

fast 6 4Hello all and welcome back to Black Ribbon Reviews! I am back on a regular basis with news, reviews and anything else I can do!

Vin Diesel and Paul walker return to put peddle to the metal and kick some ass with the aid of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Packed with action, violence and extreme situations, this movie really packs a punch and keeps the story flowing effectively. As we are all aware, the Fast and Furious franchise is a huge money maker with many dedicated fans (One being me). If you are not aware, this movie is still before Tokyo Drift and is the last one to prequel it story wise.

Talking of the story, its not extensive. O’Connor and Toretto are called upon by Hobbs to help chase down the tyrant; Owen Shaw. All because Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) miraculously appears after her apparent death. It’s a very simple and linear story with a few twists within to vary it from the rest but it doesn’t stop it from being very weak. Yet who really wants a deep and gritty, action drama flick with cars and the ‘classy’ broads? Exactly. The Fast franchise has their demographic precision engineered, which made it the $3 billion franchise it is today.

Jumping in head first, we are dropped into a race between an Import and some V8 Muscle through the winding landscape at high speed. Yet is it high speed? We follow them and notice the extreme use of the producers fast forward button which ruined the effects of speed and where way to blazay for something which prides itself on driving. The effects role throughout and really pull the movie down.

Can you smell what the rock is cooking? I can, it's a knuckle sandwich with a side order of STFU

Can you smell what the rock is cooking? I can, it’s a knuckle sandwich with a side order of STFU

Many other scenes were also edited similarly which gave a huge chunk of chase scenes a clunky and unprofessional feel. I’m no pro driver, but I’m well aware of what you can do

and get away with. Crashing your $300,000 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird into the crash barrier and flinging Don into the air to catch Letty and conveniently land on a beat up Merc was just way to much. Scenes like this smelt so bad of cheese, I could almost hear Wallace in the background screaming “Cheese Gromit!”. The cheese ball visuals isn’t the end of it. A few lines are placed in which grind on me (I also don’t appreciate the destruction of a mint condition Mustang fastback. Let’s have a moment to remember what it never got to achieve in this film).

Speaking of lines, the actors are generally good. They play simple roles with little character depth until the end which we see Han (Sung Kang) after the loss of his women, Gisele. It got very little screen time but Han’s rage was generally believable and gives us a little context of his suicidal drifting in Tokyo. In contrast, we have Letty, I genuinely think Rodriguez is a bit of a blunt tool when up against the rest and plays the same role across all movies and by now you would expect her to be the best at it, right? The movie has many fight scenes which are creative and fluid in execution, with brutal executions and general badassery. The variation in styles and a scene that juxtaposes Han and Roman to Riley was quite amusing and bits like this certainly made the whole cinema audience giggle or laugh out loud.

fast 6 2(MAJOR SPOILER) Soon after the credits star rolling, we meet Jason Statham in the credit timelapse to Han’s explosive death after a drift went wrong. Jason play Ian Shaw. Owen Shaw’s brother who I can only presume is seeking revenge for the death of his brother and is making a statement by killing Dom’s closest friend. This confirms our next villain and that Jason Statham is appearing!

(MAJOR SPOILER) Soon after the credits star rolling, we meet Jason Statham in the credit timelapse to Han’s explosive death after a drift went wrong. Jason play Ian Shaw. Owen Shaw’s brother who I can only presume is seeking revenge for the death of his brother and is making a statement by killing Dom’s closest friend. This confirms our next villain and that Jason Statham is appearing!

Speaking of villains. What is it with us Brits being the bad guys? The worst part about it, it even picks a few of our social minorities. A black and polish immigrants and black youth are the key here. These groups already get crap from the racist public but don’t ride on that and give the uneducated fools something to stand on. It may just be me looking to deep into it but it never is good to portray it to the mindless folk. However, our consolation prize is that we get it before the US…Again!

Overall, the movie is predominately for a certain group of people. Men. It’s a movie that lacks emotional connection and is simply there for good fun and is great for a Friday night out or after a particularly boring policy exam you had an hour before the movie…

With lack of anything to critically analyse, the fun side of the movie is what I shall be giving a score for. The Fun Factor is 7/10, its outrageous use of cars and the creative minds of the writers (who I can only presume to have been high) really add that little bit of fun and the credit cameo by Jason was truly kick ass.

fast 6 3