If the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences gave out an award for Most Outrageous Stunts in a Movie, “The Fate of the Furious” would surely be a contender.
And if the Academy gave out an award for Most Testosterone Tossed About in a Movie, “The Fate of the Furious” would surely be a contender.
And if the Academy gave out an award for Most Absurd Moments in a Movie Whose Plot Makes No Sense, “The Fate of the Furious” would surely be a contender.
But they don’t give out awards for that kind of foolishness, so F8 will just have to settle for tons of money at the box office.
Vin Diesel returns as Dominic Toretto, central figure of what started out as a simple action movie starring fast cars and has morphed into an exercise in excess of blowing stuff up, smashing stuff up, shooting stuff up, punching stuff out, and male braggadocio writ large.
But hey, at its core, it’s all about family.
Newlyweds Dominic and Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) are vacationing in Cuba when Dom is approached by a mysterious woman (Charlize Theron) whom we will later learn is a criminal mastermind who goes by the handle of Cipher. Cipher shows Dom a video and next thing we know he’s betraying his team, stealing EMPs and nuclear launch codes, and helping to hijack a Russian nuclear submarine.
Under orders from Secret Agent Man Frank Petty (Kurt Russell), Letty and teammates Roman (Tyrese Gibson), Tej (Chris Bridges) and Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) are forced to join forces with DSS Agent Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson), Petty’s right hand man Eric Reisner (Scott Eastwood), and “F7” villain Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) to bring in Dom.
Of course, there’s going to be 100 metric tons of carnage before that will happen.
If you’ve seen the trailers you know what to expect — cars falling from the sky, Hobbs manhandling a torpedo, the gang being chased by a submarine — in short, another day in the life for the “Fast and Furious” crew. In fact, the movie is basically the trailer stretched out for two-and-a-half hours.
If you like that sort of thing — and let’s be honest, a lot of people do — then “F8” should not disappoint. The great Helen Mirren joins the cast this time out. It’s a brief appearance and she doesn’t get to drive fast or blow anything up, but then there’s always “F9” for that.
The story — if you can make sense of it — ties in to previous films, but since I don’t remember what happened in a “Fast and Furious” movie a week after I’ve seen it, I couldn’t tell you how it all lines up.