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The Fast and the Furious
picture from The Fast and the Furious 8 out of 108 out of 108 out of 108 out of 108 out of 10
Rated: PG-13
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Current Voter Rating: 9.009 (9,823 votes)
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If ever there was a title which aptly suited its film, The Fast and the Furious would be it. This title describes to a tee not only this movie but also its cars and their drivers. The action does pause every now and then to make room for a love scene or even a scene in which the main cast of young, rebel punks sits down to say grace before a meal. But for the most part, this movie is a wild ride through the lives of a gang of street dragsters. I tip my hat to Rob Cohen (the director of this and my favorite movie of all time, Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story) for making another great film.

The streets of L.A. are ruled by a young and hot-headed, Godfather-like character named Dominic Toretto (played by Vin Diesel - perfect last name for this movie!). Everything happens with his permission. Those who rise up against him soon find they are on the wrong side. Those who are with him are extremely loyal and find that they are quite blessed. Toretto and his gang work on their suped-up cars by day, and by night they race the hell out of them...illegally...for money.

Toretto's only real threat comes from the equally menacing Johnny Tran (Rick Yune) and his fearless gang of motorcycle warriors. These Oriental outlaws have staked out their own territory and are constantly at odds with that of Toretto.

picture from The Fast and the Furious

Enter the sandy-haired Brian (Paul Walker). Brian is an FBI agent sent undercover to investigate just who is behind a series of tractor-trailer hijackings. All that is known is that the hijackings have been done on the highways, at night, by a squadron of suped-up, black Honda Civics. Brian begins his way into town by working at a specialty auto-parts store, and he eventually enters one of Toretto's races with a custom car of his own, super-charged with Nitrous Oxide, or NOS as they repeatedly call it in the film. Brian does well in the race, finishing a close second to Toretto, whose trust he slowly begins to claim.

And so the story begins. I'll have to admit it...I was quite hooked. This movie kept me interested and excited as it whisked me on its adrenaline-charged thrill ride. The races, the hijackings, the fights, the suspense, the tough guys, the sexy women, the fast cars...it was all thrown at me with all of the speed and fury that I could take. And only adding to the fury was a great soundtrack complete with lots of adrenaline pumping, on-the-edge songs.

There are a lot of similarities here with many mafia-related movies, in that we can somehow endear ourselves with the bad guys. We learn a lot about Dominic Toretto as the story unfolds, much more so even than the film's protagonist, Brian. And when we see how Dominic protects his sister, cares for his girlfriend, and treats his gang as if they were his own family, it is hard not to like him, even though he is VERY rough around the edges.

While I absolutely loved the script, the young and no-name actors, and the non-stop action, there were just a couple of aspects to this film that I did not like. For instance there were a few scenes where there were just some really corny lines which were spoken even more cornily (if cornily is a word). I wish I had an example, but watch the movie and you will hear and see what I am writing about. But what bugged me even more was the lack of true American muscle cars in this film! All we see are modified, sub-compact cars: Honda Civics, Mitsubishi Eclipses, Volkswagon Jettas, and the like. There were no Camaros, or Mustangs, or (my own and personal favorite) Firebirds! Only by the film's end do we see this big-block Dodge Charger (which I had originally assumed was maybe a 1st-generation Mustang, but I was corrected by alert readers) go for an all-too-short spin. Or should I say, "Flip" (see below)? I am assuming that the reason for the small imports is the fact that they are cheap and light. Being cheap means that they can sink more money into the engine, NOS, suspension, etc. Being light improves their acceleration. Still, they still look wimpy to me.

picture from The Fast and the Furious

thumbs up!See this movie! It is different, fun, and exciting.

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So far, the average rating for The Fast and the Furious is: 9.009 (9,823 votes)

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