The Fast & Furious films are seen by some people as a Guilty Pleasure, a film you don’t admit you like. Judging by the box office takings this weekend there are a lot of people who probably won’t admit they went to see it, not me! I am a Fast & Furious fan, there I said it, Loud and Proud!  I have enjoyed all the four previous outings, and have a special affinity for Tokyo Drift, it’s got a lot of bad reviews when it came out, but I found it to be the most fun of the series. That was Justin Lin’s first time behind the camera on the series and now he finishes his trilogy with Fast Five.

  The film begins right where Fast & Furious finished with Dominic Torreto on his way to prison, and Brian O’Connor and Dom’s  Sister Mia, about to break him out. They succeed and go on the run to Brazil, where they meet up with Vince who we last saw hanging off a lorry in the first film. Desperate for cash they get involved in a train robbery which of course goes wrong and now they find themselves in the cross hairs of the local drug kingpin Reyes and the DEA.

  This is where we have a new entrant to the franchise, with the arrival of Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson as Luke Hobbs, a man the FBI send when they want somone caught.  Bulit like a brick shithouse and armed to teeth, he’s gonna be trouble, soon he’s on their trail.

  The films have always been about the cars and theres no let up in this one, but used differently than in the past. We have a couple of big driving sequences including the amazing finale, but we also have a great foot chase through the favela and some brutal fisticuffs as well.  It seems that to keep the franchise going they are trying to keep things fresh from film to film, and in this one they have gone into Oceans Eleven territory as the last half of the film revoloves around a heist. To pull off the job they call in some familiar faces from the franchise, we have Roman (F&F2), Tej (F&F2), Han (F&F TD, 4) and Gisele, who is the same actress with the same name from 4 but seems a different character!

  Overall the film’s a real success, they could have just gone for more street racing but they have tried to make something different and it works. No it’s not gonna win any oscars but it’s not that kind of film, it knows what it is and plays it for fun. Thats what these films are about, Fun. The characters might be a bit one dimensional but you don’t care because you are along for the journey, and want to see what they will do next. The addition of the Rock also works as it gives Vin Diesel some physical opposition. The group mechanic works as well providing a few laughs, amongst all the machismo.  Now this is very important, do not leave as the credits start, half way through there is a another sequence which left me truly godsmacled and desperate to see the next film, you will be truly shocked! Thankfully I read yesterday that due to the huge openig in the US that the sequel looks on, thnak god.  If you are a fan of the previous four films or just looking for some escapist action then i can highly recommend this. It feels like the summer has started.

Rating 8/10

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