So the summer kicked off with a bang last weekend with the latest installment of “The Fast & The Furious.” Volume 5 earned over $86 million at the box office and I have to tell you…after seeing it, I can understand WHY so many people went to check it out. The trailer offers fast cars, fast action and hot chicks and on THAT level…it works. But I have to warn you…well…hang on, I’ll get to it.
Okay…so in THIS film (and I totally missed the last 2 so I have no idea what is going on at this point. Not that anyone really needs to be concerned about the past history because it doesn’t really matter anyway), our heroes (?) are escaped fugitives on the run from the law after Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker with his thoughtful blue eyes) has helped best buddy Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel with his pumped up pecs) escape from prison. Where would YOU go if you were running from the law? Why Rio, of course…and so off they go to find some madcap mayhem in the streets (and on the rooftops and on the sidewalks and just about anywhere else you can drive a car) all the while being pursued by FBI badass, The Rock…er Dwayne Johnson. Apparently Dwayne has put away his “Tooth Fairy” outfit and broke out the weights ’cause the dude looks like the Hulk in this flick and he is ALWAYS shiny and sweaty. Anyway…the local bad guy has $100 million and Diesel & Walker decide to go steal it. Of course they need a team so they hire Ludacris, Tyrese Gibson, a really hot chick I’ve never seen before named Gal and a couple other dudes and they go to break the bank (or police station) to collect the cash. Of course there are crazy action scenes as complete and utter mayhem ensues throughout the beautiful locales of Rio. I counted 4 fly-bys of the Jesus statue, multiple ass shots of girls in tight shorts and lots of gun play. Needless to say, if you’re 16 and love videogames…you’re gonna LOVE this flick.
The “Gal” I’m talkin’ about…
But for the more distinguished viewer…this movie is a complete trainwreck. Not that it’s not a fun trainwreck. I mean…maybe you like trainwrecks. Or maybe you just like trains. I mean…there is an action sequence in here that involves a train so maybe this is right up your alley? Hell…in this movie NO vehicle is safe. They destroy almost anything and everything in this crazy piece of celluloid! I mean cars and buildings and trucks and the aforementioned train and buildings and more cars…
It goes on forever!
And they destroy dialogue like no other movie I have ever seen! I mean…whoever wrote this must have had maybe a week to get it written and so they managed to put as many cliched sentences together as they possibly could to get this sucker in under the wire. It’s HORRIBLE, the dialogue in this movie. And then they try to get us to get all weepy when a character dies (don’t worry…you won’t care) and then they throw in some macho lines from the 80’s that are SO bad that not even Arnold Schwarzenegger would deliver them so they put them on the shelf for over 2 decades and now here they are! Right here in this movie! So you GOTTA go see it if just for the terrible dialogue. I kid you not, by the 2 hour mark I had laughed so many times at the ridiculous speeches and the outrageous situations, I think this easily could be marketed as a comedy.
Oh…and the laws of physics? They apparently don’t apply in Rio because I’ve never seen so many daring acts of high-flying daredevilry! Jumping over cliffs and hauling a safe by cars on wires through the streets and jumping over buildings and falling several stories and not getting hurt?!?! It’s INSANE what the people in this movie do to keep us entertained!!!
And there’s the catch. As bad as this movie probably SOUNDS at this point…I had a fun time watching it. It was completely stupid and, by all accounts, I probably SHOULDN’T give it a positive grade…but I am gonna let it squeak by simply because it’s the first of its kind this summer and it is completely mindless fun. It’s like McDonalds. Is it good for you? Nope. But it tastes pretty good when you’re eating it. But I’m still docking points for all the serious dialogue about families and dads and love and such. I mean…this ain’t “Hamlet” people. I like MY burgers with lots of grease and cheese…and there’s a LOT of cheese in THIS movie!
Overall Rating: Action = A- Dialogue = D Overall = B- (the good outweigh the bad!)