I will try to make this a review for all, although it will be difficult to do so since I am a huge fan of the series and have seen all of the previous 5 installments, most if not all in the theaters when they were released. Initially, I have really good feelings toward this picture, although if you haven’t seen any of the prequels then the story will not mean as much to you. Justin Lin returned to direct his fourth straight film while Chris Morgan wrote his fifth story for the franchise. This duo has done a tremendous job tying one movie into another and creating a true series, not just a run of sequels. Even though the franchise continues to grow in revenue, budget and Hollywood flair (big booms) it is still true to the originals that focus on street car racing and a love for cars and family.
A majority of the cast returns to reprise their roles and the series stands out in my mind by never replacing characters with new actors or actresses. Even minor roles like the one played my Eva Mendes in the second film is renewed with a cameo in the end of the fifth. I am obsessed with attention to detail in series such as these, so bringing characters back wins points in my book. Also, this movie has everything I need. A fitting but ridiculous soundtrack, a true villain, a set of heroes, ideals to explain and follow, romance, adventure, and more. It also has the Rock, Vin Diesel and Paul Walker. I love action movies and these guys have been there for me since I was a teenager struggling to find myself. I am not saying that I necessarily use their characters as role models but I definitely pay great attention to them. The supporting cast is tremendous as well and my positive feelings towards the characters that have developed throughout the series brings constant laughs and smiles to my face throughout the movie.
The standout moment of this movie came towards the end when they continued to advance this series. They finally brought the third film, Tokyo Drift, into the timeline seven years after its release. Tokyo Drift was truly an outcast but now it is right there, as a buffer in between the sixth and upcoming seventh film. Jason Statham looks to be the new villain, playing the brother of the villain in this sixth film. He seems to be out for revenge against Dom Toretto and he instigates a conflict by killing a member of Dom’s family. We all knew Han died in Tokyo Drift but now we know why and how. It is somewhat of a fitting death after the death of his girlfriend in the end of this film. That was definitely one of the sadder moments in the franchise but I’m sure it will be touched on in potential Han flashbacks in the next film. Unfortunately, Universal was greedy and wanted to film immediately so Lin and the Rock definitely won’t be returning.
Diesel, Walker, and Statham are the only confirmed stars for the next film and Morgan will be writing the story, thankfully. I cannot wait until July of 2014 to see where they go. In the end of Tokyo Drift, Dom returns to Tokyo and this is likely where the story will pick up. Killing a member of his family was a mistake that Ian Shaw (Statham) will regret making by the end of the next film. The theme of the series is strength in family and cars are merely a medium they use to explain that bond. Dom always does whatever it takes to maintain the bond within his family, especially take revenge.
All in all, it was a complex and fun film for fans but might have been nothing more than explosions and vroom vroom sounds for non-fans. Fit had only seen the previous prequel and gotten an in-depth explanation of the story from myself. She seemed to enjoy it since it was a fun and humorous adventure. She thought of it as Ocean’s Eleven in fast cars. I absolutely recommend seeing the previous movies (not Tokyo Drift… watch it after, I wish I knew what they were planning so I could have) before this one. I wouldn’t say it’s a must see in theaters although the effects are not bad. Definitely gets a thumbs up from Hungry due to my love for the series.
Drive safely in order to live hungry and fit!
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