Sunday, 4 April 2010

Film Review: FAST & FURIOUS (2009)

Director: Justin Lin
Running time: 107 mins (approx)
Certificate (UK): 12

UK Release Date: 10th April 2009

Watched on Sky+ Sunday 4th April 2010.


I have seen all of the previous films in this series on TV, I’m not a huge fan and so I won’t go out of my way to watch them. I am, however, a bit of a fan of Vin Diesel, he seems to ooze that certain charisma a film star should have. He appeared in the first of these films, took a bit of a sabbatical for the second and came back for a brief cameo in the third. So it was with some anticipation that I watched the return of his character, Dominic Toretto in this, the fourth instalment.

Dom and his gang are in the Dominican Republic and up to no good; they are hijacking fuel trucks to sell the fuel for a profit. Included in the gang is Dom’s long time girlfriend Letty. Having just pulled a job they get word that the police are onto them and Dom decides it’s best for them to all go their separate ways for a while. They do this until the day Dom gets a call from his sister, Mia, telling him that Letty has been killed. Meanwhile, FBI agent Brian O’Conner, who was featured in the fist two of these films, is investigating notorious drugs dealer named Braga. It seems Braga is using drivers to smuggle drugs across the Mexican border and it was while working for him that Letty was killed. So both Dom and Brian have reason to get in with Braga, Dom, for revenge and Brian, for justice. They both try out as drivers and succeed by one means or another. It’s now a case of how do they get to the illusive Braga. I’ll leave my little summary there or I’ll give the whole plot away!

This is a pretty well made film with lots of car stunts and quite a lot of CGI work that is pretty well done, but does, at times, look a bit like a video game. You’ll know what I mean when you see the tunnel chase near the end of the film. As ever Vin Diesel was very good as Dominic Toretto, as was Paul Walker as Brian O’Conner. Honourable mentions go to Jordana Brewster as Mia Toretto, Michelle Rodriguez as Letty and John Ortiz as Campos.

I’ll admit it’s not the best film I’ve ever seen and so it won’t be making any of my top tens at the end of the year. But it does what it says on the tin, it’s got lots of car chases and there’s plenty of testosterone flying about. The chases were exciting and well executed, when they didn’t use too much CGI. I can’t recommend it very highly, but it is entertaining and it won’t tax the grey cells too much.

My score: 5.4/10

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