When a mysterious woman seduces Dom into the world of crime and a betrayal of those closest to him, the crew face trials that will test them as never before.
‘The Fast and the Furious’ series has established itself as one of the most consistently fun and enjoyable blockbuster franchises around since ‘Fast Five’ was released in 2011, and I’ve enjoyed all of the entries since that one to different degrees. With the 8th film in the series, released as ‘Fast & Furious 8’ in the UK, for the first time since that ‘reboot’ the formula is starting to feel a little tired. The premise of this film builds on the last one where many of the characters went their separate ways, with some convoluted plotting introduced to develop a scenario that not only brings the gang back together, but that pits them against one another. On the side of the ‘good guys’, we have Kurt Russell’s Mr. Nobody assembling the team to track down a group of cyber terrorists with links to the bad guys from the last couple of films, with Charlize Theron leading the charge for the bad guys.
The film is still a lot of fun and there’s a degree of familiarity with the full ensemble now that the audience can just sit back and watch them bounce off one another, but the film is undoubtedly hindered by a creaking script that barely holds together and a runtime north of two hours that doesn’t feel strictly necessary. A quick Wikipedia check suggests the last three films were all of similar runtime, but none of those films felt like they had as much padding as this film does. I also felt the action sequences lacked the wow factor of the last couple of films, and whilst there are some cool moments, the sheer inventiveness and over the top craziness just isn’t there. My feeling at the time was that Paul Walker’s death and the end of the 7th film in the series would have marked a natural endpoint for the franchise, and unfortunately ‘Fast and Furious 8’ only serves to reinforce that feeling.
I did enjoy this film, despite this probably reading as a wholly negative review, but it’s testament to the high bar this series has set for itself that I came out of ‘Fast & Furious 8’ expecting a little more than what we got!
Directed By: F. Gary Gray
Starring: Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris Bridges, Nathalie Emmanuel, Kurt Russell, Scott Eastwood, Charlize Theron, Helen Mirren, Elsa Pataky, Tego Calderon, Don Omar and Kristover Hivju