Monday, April 6, 2015

FURIOUS 7-so furious!

Alright I know this is a polarizing franchise. People (me and mine) either love it or hate the crap out of it.  If you hate it  then turn away there is nothing here for you.
Still here?
The movie opens with Jason Statham (or  Deckard  Shaw), the older brother of Owen Shaw, (the bad guy from Fast 6) looking over said brother in a hospital. Well, the remains of a hospital as he has destroyed the place and anyone guarding his brother. Then we get a return to the Race War scene for some nostalgia. This is followed by  Shaw having a meet and greet with  Agent Hobbs (The Rock) in an insane fist fight in an office building full of anything and everything made of glass.The Statham vs. Rock fight is completely bonkers! Alright Mr. Statham. Welcome to the franchise. This is the first of several insane fisticuffs in the movie. 


The early events of Furious 7 take place during the last reel of Tokyo Drift, which is a great way to tie all the movies together. It seems older bro Shaw is after Dom and his buddies for taking out his little brother. This lead to a Tokyo funeral that quickly becomes a testosterone and adrenaline pumping chase which ends in the best game of chicken ever! This introduces Shaw to Dom and the fisticuffs look to being anew. However….. enter Kurt Russell (Agent Frank Petty) who chases off Shaw and saves Dom. Why? Well because they him and his crew to steal a hacker form some mercs who work for a goon made Moses Jakande. Yup the movie just went from revenge theme to next level crazy para-military heist.
This leads to the first really insane action sequence that involves parachuting cars, a  Caucasus Mountain vehicle battle, a ridiculous Cliffside car chase and the second crazy fist fight (this time between Paul Walker and Tony Jaa in an out of control armored bus-tank).

Now we jump to Abu Dhabi where the hacker needs to retrieve a flash drive that was sold to a bazillionare. This leads to the second third insane and really kind of hot girl on girl fisticuff scene (Michelle Rodriguez vs. sultan guard Ronda Rousey). Plus there is an added bit of car craziness with a super car driving through and jumping into multiple sky scrapers! INSANITY!

The start of something just beautifully awesome!
Now, the gang has the tools to catch evil Jason Statham. The evil merc Moses wants the hacker dead. Kurt Russell is awesome in a gun battle. I LOVE YOU JACK BURTON! The gang heads home to L.A. to play the biggest game of cat and mouse with an attack helicopter and associated attack drone. NUTS RIGHT! WAIT!  All through the busy streets of L.A.!  CRAZYSAUCE! Exploding cop cars and collateral damage! The Rock has a mini-gun! AWESOME! There is a fourth bout of fisticuffs (Walker and Jaa again). EXPLOSIONS! Then another game of chicken with Dom and Shaw that lead to another round of punching! BULLETS! Did the promise of Statham in the series deliver? Hells yes!  By now it was hard to hear what was going on over the sound of my manhood swelling due to all the bonkers  action action action during the movie! How can it all possibly end?

Deep breath….and now…..and I’m back…. and I might have to change my pants…….
Now Furious 7 isn’t all action. Between the stunt set pieces there is a lot about love, family and friends. This has always been a running theme through these movies. Here it feels a lot different, knowing that one of the stars is actually gone. This gets a bit heavy handed at times, but you know why. The end of the film is very somber, and had some weeping in the theater, as the goodbyes were said to Brian (Paul Walker).
Are there issues? Why yes. Like the human body’s ability to withstand damage. Physics are out the window. Having two villains where neither one has the right amount of screen time. The plot is coco-la-bonza. However, you aren’t going to see this for anything more than thrills, explosions, bullets, punching, cars and babes (female and or male). You should probably go watch Foxcatcher or Birdman again if you are after anything besides all that.  
Furious 7 is just as insane as the last few films. Sure they are all impossible. Sure every character has probably died multiple times due to injury. Sure these are just insane action scenes strung together with a small plot. Sure there are scantily clad ladies all over the place. Yet, they all work. They are popcorn munching brain shutting off action movies! Pure escapism done at its very best!
Is Furious 7 where the good times end? Maybe yes and no?  I imagine that this will make money and the studio will push for  an 8th installment. However, this really felt like the final film for this franchise. It was next level insane and had a definitive ending. The perfect bookend for the franchise. Maybe this is the end for the main core of characters and now Dominic Toretto will race on with a new crew or solo in an 8th Fast/Furious movie?
If this was the end of this Fast era then what an amazing ridiculous action filled testosterone brimming end! 

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