F Gary Gray directs the latest and 8th film in the Fast and Furious franchise, The Fate of The Furious, as Dom goes rogue turns his back on his crew, working with the hacker and cyber terrorist Cypher, Doms crew gets together and teams up with convict Deckard Shaw in order to stop him and Cypher. The film stars Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson, Charlize Theron Jason Statham, Michelle Rodriguez, Chris Bridges, Kurt Russell, Chris Eastwood.
The family is back and more family than ever.. well not exactly, with Dom going rogue and turning on his team for seemingly nefarious reasons, though we do get to know those reasons through the plot, in comes Cypher (Charlize Theron) and her dubious plotting and the team gets together to take her on. Cypher seems to be another in the line of megalomaniac central antagonists straight out of a Bond film to grace the Fast franchise but to Therons’ credit, she’s great at playing sneaky and maniacal characters with no empathy with noticeable cold delivery which plays up interestingly against the ever full of life and emotional Dom (Vin Diesel). I also like the new aspect that Cypher brings to the table in cyber terrorism, being able to hack into and remote control cars, CCTV etc, the last few films seem to be based on technology based villains for some reason and this is no change to that trend, anyway this time around, the crew is going up against less of an army and more of one man army in Dom with Cyphers resources.
And this makes for an interesting dynamic, we’ve never seen the crew go against Dom or vice versa so it is a little strange and disconcerting but still thrilling, will Dom hurt his crew, will they have to hurt him to bring him in? Also central to the conflict is Letty and Doms’ relationship, she of course tries to bring him in as well but they clearly still feel for each other, complicating things. In terms of overall scope, Fate of the Furious doesn’t necessarily up the ante I feel, just changing the status quo with a new setting – New York, Dom going rogue and technology being a sort of villain. This change in theme of sorts is interesting, with there being more of a sense of permanent loss in the last 3 films and definitely in this one in a particularly shocking scene, people are getting straight up shot now (as they were in previous films) but this felt like more of a bonafied action film, with some emotional moments, namely involving Dom. Said moments aren’t exactly touched on however and sort of sail along in the pretty fast paced plot, though we do get that iconic Family table eating scene, of course the most important part of any Fast film.
Also there are some big, notable set pieces present, especially sequence in New York with a host of remote control cars which made me laugh out loud actually and with the ice sheet set piece you’ve seen a part of from trailers. And don’t get me wrong, spectacle is all well and good and the film delivers, but it does go a little over the top, even for this franchise with some physics defying moments which may be too ridiculous for some and will leave others whooping and cheering, such are the Fast films in a nutshell…. but for what its worth, Fast 8 is generally fun to watch and very action oriented. Fate of The Furious is a fun, entertaining film, as is to be expected with the franchise as it is and Dom going rogue brought an interesting new dynamic but I couldn’t help feeling things were a bit bland and unremarkable, maybe due to the writing and especially in comparison to Fast Five and the more recent Fast Seven and while the overall result isn’t terrible, it’s nothing special either.
. Set pieces are fun, ridiculous but great spectacle
. Dom going rogue brings new dynamic, as does Deckard shaw
. Character interactions are still fun and funny, especially Tej-Roman
. Plot seems a bit by the numbers and same-y not as interesting as previous films