Fast and Furious 5

A decade ago the remake of The Fast and the Furious became a monster hit.  Loaded with tough guys, hot chicks and fast cars, it became the ultimate guilty pleasure.  Five films on and the series continues the same formula which made it such a hit.  Including many characters from the previous chapters, it sets out to be a pure adrenaline rush for rev-head fanatics.  This it certainly succeeds doing with the old adage ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ looming large over this fun formulaic production.

On the run after their last adventure Brian (Paul Walker) and Dominic (Vin Diesel) find themselves in Rio de Janeiro.  Scraping together a living via their souped up cars, they run afoul of a local drug kingpin who wants them dead.  Also on their trail is federal agent Luke (Dwayne Johnson) whose lethal pursuit places them in jeopardy.  Caught between both sides of the law, the gang use their skills to extract themselves from a deadly situation from which there seems no escape.

Given we’re now up to No. 5 in the franchise, it’s amazing how fresh the concept still seems.  This could be put down to Justin Lin’s energetic direction which maximises the opportunities for outrageous stunts.  He should know how to do this by now given this is his third film in a row for this series.  He is ably supported by the regular team who have much fun causing tons of mayhem and destruction in their own style.

The best aspect of this entry is its eagerness to explore the characters.  Whilst the action is still spectacular, these scenes are heightened immeasurably by the viewer actually caring for our heroes.  Probably due to the increased running time, each character has their moment to shine with their input effectively leading to a typically outrageous finale.  The cars are given a fine work-out once again and should dazzle those who see these movies for the four-wheeled stunners on display.

A strong entry in the series, Fast and Furious 5 builds on the gains made in its last entry.  With No. 6 announced to be on its way, there’s no stopping it and given how much fun this one was some more escapist nonsense isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Rating out of 10:  7

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