Fast 8

Fast 8 (Fast and Furious 8)

‘The Fast and The Furious’ franchise roars back on to the screen with a new movie: ’Fast 8’. Sporting a new low-cut title, the action has again been ramped up whilst still reliant on its snap-on cast to push the plot over start/finish line.

Now in its eighth incarnation, ‘The Fast and The Furious’ franchise clearly doesn’t feel the need to start over. In the same way that it has found its audience, it has also found its formula and in ‘Furious 8’, its story unashamedly decides to stick to what it knows best. With bigger stunts, more star cameos and further nods to the notion of “family”, ’Furious 8’ hugs its same-but-different mantra like hot rubber to molten asphalt.

As in keeping with every ‘Furious’ movie before it, ‘Fast 8’s’ dramatic cornerstone is deceit – and cars – but mainly deceit.

As in keeping with every ‘Furious’ movie before it, ‘Fast 8’s’ dramatic cornerstone is deceit – and cars – but mainly deceit. Because if there’s one thing that Dom (Vin Diesel’s former-car-thief character) can’t handle is lying and treachery. However this time, it’s his turn to deceive. And whilst such treachery would lead to a straight-out fight in any other movie, ‘Fast 8’s’ violence (like its sequels) is mainly expressed with roaring engines. For whilst bullets spray, explosions bloom and logic gets blown beyond all reason, all of Furious 8’s on-screen rage can always be found inside the driver’s seat. Relief from this relentless motor-mayhem, comes in the form of Jason Statham and The Rock, whose rivalry, martial art sequences and forays into light comedy stop ‘Fast 8’ completely flying off the cliff of its own intentions.

With more and more, outlandish stunts that beggar both belief and fuel consumption, ‘Fast 8’ can still be enjoyed as pleasingly, brain-dead fare. If you park your expectations, turn-off the real world and surrender to its spectacle and this latest movie will offer you two hours of reasonable distraction at the end of a working week. However, for more classic, cerebral and grounded motor fare you might want to check out the classics such as ‘Bullit’, Walter Hill’s ’The Driver’ and more recently ’Ronin’. With Edgar Wright’s ’Baby Driver’ just coming around the corner, ‘Furious 8’ pumped-up adrenaline might just entertain your eyes and ears until your heart gets jacked by another, better-told motoring tale.

Mark Esper

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