Monday, May 23, 2022 |
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I’m very hesitant to see any movie that is part four or five of a series. I don’t even like part three in a movie series. The only exception to the rule is the original “Star Wars” trilogy. All the films worked. From “The Godfather,” “Rocky” and “Jaws” to “Lethal Weapon,” something magically changes and ruins the third and ESPECIALLY the fourth film. The same applies to this series, which started with “The Fast and the Furious” which was a mega-hit that led to a great sequel (“2 Fast 2 Furious”) from master director John Singleton (“Boyz n the Hood”). The series continued with “FF: Tokyo Drift” and then the fourth was “Fast and Furious,” which was a total dud and a shameless reason to bring Vin Diesel back. Vin Diesel had left the series because he wasn’t being paid enough to consider the sequels (he makes up to $20 million a pic after the “Triple X” series).
I saw the poster for “Fast Five” and wanted to see it because Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) is in it. This film is not like the other films; I say that to warn the people who flocked to the first few films to see flashy cars, high-speed chases and tons of beautiful women. This film is more of an action film that I would say should have been titled “The Fast and the Furious meets Ocean’s Eleven”. “Fast Five,” of course, stars Paul Walker in his recurring role and this film brings back Tyrese Gibson (from “2Fast 2Furious”). Tyrese Gibson (“Baby Boy”) actually steals the show with his one-liners and comedic timing. Dwayne Johnson (“Tooth Fairy”) is great as a federal agent and there is a little surprise for us all: he cusses in the movie. I don’t think any of us have seen “The Rock” swear. His film career has had a number of kids movies, so it was even more weird to hear him talking that way.
The film is basically a caper with flashy cars. “Fast Five” runs about 15 minutes too long, but is never boring. You’re just left feeling that a few scenes weren’t needed. I’m in an odd position; I can’t particularly recommend it, but I wouldn’t say skip it. If you liked the other films, this one is worth it (but again — the movie is NOT based around racing — warning, car fans). If you like “The Rock,” this film is a must. I have to lower my seal of approval as a basic audience member. I don’t knock the film as a whole, because there are amazing stunts, fight scenes and movies are very hard to make. However, “Fast Five” falls short in the fact it’s an action film that is marketed like a sequel but could have been its own film. I really felt cheated by the marketing.
It was worth the matinee price and overall, it does have some cool big-screen moments. I was just expecting it to be more like the previous films. It was way better then the third and fourth films. Just remember, if you rent any of these, only get “The Fast and the Furious” and “2Fast 2Furious”. As for my usual seal of approval rating, I will give it a 65 percent. There are much worse movies out there. I’d love to say it, but maybe this week I can pass on my closing line. However, do get out and support Kukui Grove Cinema.
There has to be something worth seeing. “See you soon” (hopefully at the movies next time).
• Paul Booth is a film producer/director/historian and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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