Monday, October 3, 2011

Fast Five

 
  When I first saw Fast Five I was incredibly impressed to say the least, its a top notch movie in a bottom shelf genre. Its like junk food that actually happens to be incredibly good, no one thinks much of junk food, but everyone eats it.  However, upon second viewing, I think Fast Five is an ideal serving of over-the-top cinematic desert. Pure indulgence.
 
  Vin Diesel has pretty much in my eyes, attained classic action star status in the likes of Schwarzenegger and Stallone with Fast Five. It was well received by critics (which was pretty mind-blowing in itself) and it turned out to be an all around rock solid (no pun intended. Seriously.) action movie.  Its everything I could've asked for from a movie like this.  The last big movies like this, with the stars in their prime, that managed to be as satisfying as this, in my opinion, were from the eighties.

   Which would mean that Fast Five is the 2nd coming of wholly entertaining slam-bang action movies. It definitely ranks as one of the most enjoyable movies I've seen in a long long time.  Vin Diesel's star power is definitely not wasted here, his character is the leader of this team he's put together to pull off an insane heist in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. He plans to take this ruthless drug lord's money, all of it, every last cent, right out from under him. Which ends up totally about $100 million dollars. Because our 'heroes' are ripping off an evil heartless person, it gives us a reason to root for them. Cause lets face it Dominic Toretto is no saint. When it all boils down to it, he's considered a bona fide criminal. But, Fast Five reminds us... so was Robin Hood.

  So its okay to go with these guys for this high octane ride and watch them pull off a 'mission: impossible'. But of course these guys do it in style. And lots of it.

   Not even the ever popular Transporter movies, which star another big name in current action movies, Jason Statham, are this fun to watch.  Fast Five is wall to wall action, clever one-liners, timely comedy, thrilling car chases, and lots of pretty women. It takes an established genre formula and manages to actually improve on it. Its really fun to watch. The cast has incredible chemistry and a really cool dynamic thats reminiscent of movies like The Italian Job.  In fact alot of this movie is like The Italian Job except hyped on massive action scenes and bass pumping music.

  Fast Five has alot of heart to go along with all the action scenes and car chases. It has a strong sense of family with series mainstay Brian O'Connor (Tokyo Drift aside.) and Mia Toretto in a relationship and a little surprise on the way.  This makes way for some quieter moments between the iconic trio, Dom, Brian and Mia, and really adds to the family aspect. Which make it all that more intense when their lives are on the line. And, fortunately, the core, and extended cast has been together through so many other movies that the family dynamic, that stretches out to even secondary characters, feels genuine and is actually pretty moving at times.

   I firmly believe that without some emotional tie to the characters, an action movie cannot properly anchor itself on anything but shootouts and such. And because we've actually seen all that stuff before... it'd feel insanely shallow and empty. Thankfully, and amazingly, Fast Five has that essential emotional anchor which makes the action sequences that much more engaging and exciting.
So fun and I completely reccomend it.

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