High on the stunts
In an early scene of Fast & Furious 6, series regular Brian (Paul Walker) has this to blurt about his fellow accelerated agitators: “We do what we do best. We improvise.”
You can say that again, Brian. Actually, on second thoughts, don’t say another word.
Otherwise someone might start asking some hard questions. Especially regarding the improvised return of a former series regular thought to be deader than the dodo.
Hey, err, didn’t we all see Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) take a fatal bullet to her person a few sequels ago?
Umm, no, we did not. Letty is back, foot-to-the-flooring it, and as frowny-faced as ever. Only with enough amnesia to make Jason Bourne look like a guy who remembers everything.
Yep, when it comes to Fast & Furious 6, it’s best if you forget all previous laps of the circuit. Then you can feel the rush of this gilt-edged, guilty-pleasure joy ride to the max.
Back to Letty, the one-time prime squeeze of F&F main man Dom Toretto (Vin Diesel, whose head now resembles a steroid-fed talking kidney bean).
She’s been spotted by the feds committing four-wheeled felonies all over the globe for an international criminal mastermind named Shaw (Luke Evans).
Naturally, only one bunch of exiled fugitive rubber-burners can stop Shaw from getting his grubby paws on a sinister gizmo, and also give Letty her memory back.
Therefore Team Toretto — last seen hiding out in extradition-free glamour destinations around Europe — is brought back together after a revving-up from their old frenemy, Agent Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson).
Here’s the deal. If Dom and his petrol-headed posse can run Shaw off the road to world domination, Hobbs will get them a pardon to reside once more in the US. Just in time for Fast & Furious 7 (in cinemas July 2014).
As we should know by now, no one goes to a F&F movie for the story. (Though if you do, help is available.) All that anyone wants from this hugely popular franchise is to get high on the fumes of one audacious four-wheeled stunt after another.
On this level alone, F&F6 delivers the goods spectacularly: both with quantity (the film runs 130 minutes but never stops for a red-light breather) and quality (there are at least five set-piece sequences that more than justify the price of admission for full-on fans).
Director Justin Lin knows these kind of movies inside-out, and he is not afraid to keep on upping the ante when it comes to the creative choreography of cars.
There are moments in F&F6 where the action is taking place simultaneously on three distinct planes: on-road, off-road and through the air.
Yes, it is all so utterly ridiculous. But let me tell you, it is all so undeniably exciting and entertaining.
Overall, a worthy, nitrous-blasting addition to a franchise that may not be so fresh any more but is as fast and furious as ever.