Sunday, October 11, 2009

4ast and 4urious

Fast & Furious (2009)

Vroom, vroom, vroom, vroom.

Who among you asked for this ass-baloney, the fourth film in the Fast and Furious “saga?” It reunites the original cast from the 2001 film, or as the ads say, “New model, original parts.” If only the movie were as cheeky as that tag line.

Do we really care about the plot in a Fast and Furious movie? It’s merely there to hang all the increasing ridiculous car racing and chasing. If we must…Paul Walker is back as Brian O’Conner. In the first movie he was a rookie L.A.P.D. officer. In 2 Fast 2 Furious, he was a cop on the run. He ran so much he skipped number 3 and returns here as an F.B.I. agent (guess the L.A.P.D. had enough of him) attempting to bring down a major Mexican heroin supplier who uses fast cars to run his dope into the U.S.

Man-mountain Vin Diesel also returns as Dom Toretto, the fastestest and furiousest illegal car driver-racer-guy. He and his girl Letty (Michelle Rodriguez, aka the chick with the permanent frown) are doing their illegal thang in the Dominican Republic stealing gas tanks from highway trucks. They separate for a time “cause the heat’s closing in” (paging Al Pacino). Dom gets a call from his sister Mia (Jordana Brewster, completely our Fast & Furious Fantastic Four reunion) that Letty’s been killed IN A CAR ACCIDENT bringing Dom and his muscles back to LA and on the track to who killed Letty. Of course this dovetails with O’Conner’s assignment, so the two adversaries face off to race off.

Watching this I was struck by just how much like mannequins Paul Walker and Jordana Brewster really are, especially Brewster. They are pretty and nice to look at but by the grease monkey gods of Lube Stop they can’t act. Vin Diesel is best in Pitch Black mode, meaning keep the dialogue to a minimum, unless you’re being directed by Steven Spielberg.

No one who watches these movies gives a crap about the plot, they just want to see some hot auto porn. And this movie really disappoints, with too much CGI work thrown into the mix, especially in the big running the drugs through a mountain tunnel sequence. First of all, WTF? How could they build a SEVERAL MILES LONG tunnel through a mountain that two cars racing side by side could fit through? Not all the drug money in the world could do that. The tunnel sequences truly LOOKED like a video game (CGI dudes, watch how you LIGHT your scenes!) and paled in comparison to the actual live-action street racing done on downtown L.A. streets earlier in the film. That sequence had the most ludicrous GPS system EVER, with ridiculously detailed 3D building representations. These films are basically cartoons (no pun intended) but how about just a little realism, car folks?

This movie was so dull it forgot to have the really cheesy lines like "I live my life a quarter mile at a time." The closet it comes is when the bad guy's chief hottie and Vin Diesel have a scene where she propositions him and he replies, "I'm a boy who appreciates a good body, regardless of the make." On second thought, maybe they should leave them out.

This series has run its course and - like the Leprechaun, Hellraiser and Jason movies - has no where left to go but...outer space (flying cars? and no buzzing the BNFOS station, you hear). The Fast and the Furious: Race to the Future, anyone?

Star Trek image is Copyright 2009 and a Registered Trademark of CBS Studios, Inc. No infringement of those rights is intended. Screencap from

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