Fast & Furious 6

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Fast & Furious 6
By Wilson Morales

If there was a franchise whose ‘engine’ won’t fail, it has to be the ‘Fast and the Furious’ series. Having started over 10 years ago (2001), no one could have ever imagined that this highly-testosterone series about guys and cars would have lasted this long, and let alone get better each time. You can find some faults within each film, but you won’t find lots of complaints regarding the action sequences.

In the latest installment, ‘Fast & Furious 6,’ the ante has been upped to a degree that should please the audience and come back for repeat viewings. Not only is the film more action-packed, but the chemistry, comedy, and death-defying stunts are beyond your imagination. It’s certainly a ride you don’t want to stop or get off.

Continuing from the end of ‘Fast Five,’ it’s discovered that Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), who was thought to be dead in the fourth film ‘Fast & Furious,’ is alive and working with a crew of highly trained individuals who pull off dangerous heists. With Agent Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) on the case, even he realizes that the only way to take down British Special Forces soldier Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) and his crew down is bring in Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel), ex-FBI agent-turned-criminal Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) and his team of criminals back in with the promise of pardons for each should they succeed. With Roman (Tyrese Gibson), tech guy Tej (Chris “Ludacris” Bridges), “Tokyo Drift’s” Han (Sung Kang) and Gisele (Gal Gadot) enjoying the fruits of their last heist, the taste of freedom is more than enough to bring the whole crew back together again.

Even Dom’s pregnant sister Mia (Jordana Brewster) realizes that Dom and Brian work better together and encourages the men to bring back Letty. While Hobbs’s former partner Elena Neves (Elsa Pataky) is now romantically involved with Dom, in comes new partner Riley (Gina Carano), who proves she can handle any combat coming her way.

Shaw proves that he’s no easy foe to take down. With his own team of highly trained drivers and muscle (Clara Paget, Joe Taslim, Kim Kold), Dom, Brian, and Hobbs have their work cut out for them in this latest caper.

Director Justin Lin and screenwriter Chris Morgan, who have been with the series since the 3rd film, 2006’s “Tokyo Drift,” have done a great of ejecting more characters in the film and having each have their ‘moment in the sun’ instead of having them give in a thankless performance. No matter how each of the films was received by critics and audiences, the sell was always the cars and camaraderie among the characters. Over time, if you have seen all of the films, you became invested with Dom and Brian and where they were going in the lives. Many can say that bringing in characters from the other films in ‘Fast Five’ re-ignited the franchise, and to see them again is a welcome pleasure. Who knew Tyrese had comedic chops in him. His pairing with Ludacris works as well as the romantic pairing of Sung and Gadot’s characters.

As for the action sequences, besides the death-defying stunts that will have audiences saying ‘Whoa’ numerous times, the physical action scenes is just balls-out amazing. With the casting of Joe Taslim from ‘The Raid’ and former mixed martial artist and actress Gina Carano (‘Haywire’), fans are in for a really good treat. The film isn’t perfect in any sense. Yes, some of the scenes are unbelievable, like a car chase scene in the middle of London or another where one character is on the edge of death but gets miraculously saved. They may seem over-the-top, but the franchise has never shied away from that.

From start to finish, the engine never slows down as ‘Fast & Furious 6’ is certainly one hell of a joyride; and since there another sequel coming up, one wonders how much freshness can be added to this locomotive series.

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