Can the seven-gear franchise retain its blockbuster impact with the penultimate instalment? Discover the truth here.
Few would have guessed that during the Summer Of Film 2011, Fast Five would turn out to be one of the pleasant minor surprise hits of the season. It did have its fair share of shortcomings, though, so the question remains- can this Summer's Fast & Furious 6 right those wrongs to become something greater altogether? To be honest, not really. That's not going to stop it being a brilliant mild blockbuster for racing and action fans to rent when it arrives on DVD, though.
The suitably high-octane narrative opens with a simple premise: Dom (Vin Diesel) and his team are called on a final mission of redemption by undercover cop Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson), only to discover that personal secrets lie beneath the surface of this ultimate battle of technology and drive. Soon enough, the action develops fully into the overblown, unrealistic setpieces that fans will undoubtedly recall well from Fast Five, and it is very safe to say that those viewers unwilling to suspend their disbelief during motion pictures will come out of this one very disappointed.
Nevertheless, the cast in particular do great justice to the exaggerated script's dialogue. Diesel and Johnson maintain a superb love-hate chemistry, while Paul Walker is a superb accomplice to Dom's mission who will easily be the main source of empathy among the audience thanks to his domestic family roots. A 'new' addition to the team is Michelle Rodriguez's Letty Ortiz, who appeared in The Fast & The Furious and Fast & Furious, and now returns with amnesia to lend a compelling new character dynamic. Rodriguez does the part justice in terms of its ambiguity and the tension it evokes for Dom (her former lover). Indeed, it will be interesting to see how the dynamic develops as we move into the franchise's finale next year.
While we're on the matter of the impending climax of the Fast & Furious series, this reviewer would assert that it's perhaps better that the end is coming sooner rather than later. Despite boasting incredible special effects, compelling action setpieces and a dedicated cast, Fast & Furious 6 nevertheless stumbles in many of the same areas as its predecessors, its pacing feeling stunted and the core narrative lacking any true emotional resonance or depth. This shouldn't outright halt you, dear viewer, from seeing the film, but equally it's probably for the best that you'll now only be able to catch this on DVD via purchase or rental with it gone from cinemas everywhere. What we get overall, then, with Fast & Furious 6 is a Summer blockbuster which undoubtedly lives up to the two adjectives adorning its franchise's title, yet one which still lacks the depth and emotive resonance required to ascend the ranks of our scoring system into the coveted 3.5-5* realms.