Film Review by Clayton Barnett
Fast and Furious 7
Dominic Torretto and his crew thought they left the criminal mercenary life behind. They defeated an international terrorist named Owen Shaw and went their seperate ways. But now, Shaw's brother, Deckard Shaw is out killing the crew one by one for revenge. Worse, a Somalian terrorist called Jakarde, and a shady government official called "Mr. Nobody" are both competing to steal a computer terrorism program called God's Eye that can turn any technological device into a weapon. Torretto must reconvene with his team to stop Shaw and retrieve the God's Eye program while caught in a power struggle between terrorist and the United States government.
The gang is back for one last ride, and what a doozy it is. Parachuting cars, a Jason Statham Vin Diesel street fight, a bevy of babes, a bevy of beautiful cars and the Rock versus a helicopter.
In the franchise that put him on the map, Fast and Furious 7 is Paul Walker’s final performance, and what a powerful send-off. Not only does the sequel continue revving up the stakes with more jaw-dropping car stunts and hi-octane action, it carries some hefty emotional drive as well. The final tribute will bring a tear to a few fan’s eyes that’s for sure.
James Wan (The Conjuring, Saw) takes over directing duties from Justin Lin (who looked after the previous 4 installments) and does a great job making the sequel (which follows directly after the Toyko Drift film and the 6th installment) accessible to people who haven’t followed the entire series.
Vin Diesel, whose voice sounds he’s got a V8 engine running in his chest, doles out cheesy one-liners along with Dwayne Johnson like it’s going out of fashion, but it’s all glorious popcorn fun. And how awesome is it that the Transporter himself (well the actor anyway) has made it to the Furious franchise? Fans of the series will just wet themselves when the Stath goes toe to toe with chrome dome. His tussle with the Rock is pretty epic too. Kurt Russell makes a welcome appearance as a shadowy military man that we might see in future sequels, and UFC champ Ronda Rousey (who’ll also be seen in the upcoming Entourage film) kicks some ass as well.
Does it feel too over-the-top? Sure, but that’s exactly what you want if you know the series. You’re not here for Shakespeare. Seeing a supercar fly through Abu Dhabi skyscrapers on IMAX is just what you expect, and boy did the audience I was with lap it all up.
Loud, explosive and actually gorgeous to look at (especially on IMAX) Fast and Furious 7 doesn’t disappoint. The Stath helps knock it up a gear too, and it’s a fitting and emotional farewell to franchise favourite Paul Walker.
Releases: 2nd April 2015
Rating: M – Contains violence
Duration: 137 minutes
Starring: Vin Diesel, Jason Statham, Dwayne Johnson, Kurt Russell, Michelle Rodriguez, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster, Djimon Hounsou, Lucas Black
Director: James Wan (The Conjuring, Saw)
Production on the film was halted on December 1, 2013 following the tragic death of Paul Walker, who was killed in a car crash on November 30, 2013. Shooting had been underway in Atlanta and the film was scheduled to be released on July 11, 2014. Director James Wan and Universal executives held a conference call to determine how to proceed with the production in a manner respectful to Walker's memory. Walker was nearly half way through filming at the time of his death. Although there was some consideration about scrapping the film altogether, the film eventually resumed productions following rewrites to address Walker's absence and give his character a proper send-off.
Body doubles, stunt doubles, and CGI were used to complete the film following Paul Walker's death. Walker's brothers Caleb Walker and Cody Walker were among the doubles, and also provided voice over for the character Brian O'Conner.
Denzel Washington turned down a role in this film. Universal Studios were in search for a big star to play a minor role in this film and then play a larger role in the next film. Kurt Russell was later cast in the role. Taylor Lautner and Halle Berry were also considered for roles in this film, and Indian actress Deepika Padukone had to pass on a role due to scheduling conflicts.
Paul Walker's final film.
The first sequel in the franchise to take place after The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006).