Vin Diesel, star of Fast & Furious 6, was quoted in Entertainment Weekly as saying, “when this film comes out, quite frankly, there’s going to be some real Oscar watch.” Having just seen the film, my advice to him would be to start lowering those expectations.
I’ll admit, I am probably not the target audience for this franchise, and as an outsider looking in, the movie was completely absurd: the dialogue consisted mostly of terrible David Caruso-style one-liners being spoken by terrible actors, gender and ethnic stereotypes ran rampant, with characters saying choice gems such as, “cars are so much better than women—when you trade up, they don’t try to take half your money,” and unnecessary violence and destruction throughout.
That being said, for those who enjoyed the first five films, Fast & Furious 6 offers incredible—and laws of physics-defying—action sequences, including one that features a crashing plane with a crashing car that crashes out of said crashing plane. There is also an extraordinary martial arts sequence between the two leading ladies—Michelle Rodriguez’s Letty and Gina Carano’s Riley—that defies anyone to cat call or make jokes about how they wish those girls were in bikinis. The visual effects and CGI are absolutely stunning throughout the film. Additionally, the film is set in some of the most beautiful places in the world, and director Justin Lin (who, incidentally, has directed several episodes of the fantastically underrated Community) makes sure that we know it, capturing breathtaking shots of London, Spain, the Canary Islands, and more.
The film is everything that fans will expect it to be and more, which is something that not many franchises can say by the time they get to the sixth installment. Personally, while I would advise the studio to quit while they’re ahead, there seems to be no intention of doing so, with this sixth movie ending with a teaser for a seventh one, set to open in July 2014.
The bottom line? Yes, this movie is over-the-top, preposterous, cheesy, and one giant wish fulfilment for everyone involved. But is it fun and entertaining? Absolutely. Ultimately, it won’t be winning any Oscars, but it is a worthwhile see for those who love the franchise. B-