There is no shortage of angry voices that express supreme outrage whenever a ‘Fast & Furious’ movie comes up in the conversation. Mainly when a new installment of a fast and endless saga is released. In an incredible similarity to the nu-metal phenomenon (which was a clear influence on the original film along with ‘They Call Him Bodhi’), its detractors try to assemble the most hurtful criticism from the very base used by those who defend it: the franchise is a joke.
Many think they know the difference between ending up being a joke and pretending to be one, but they are just the ones who fail the most when judging. The Vin Diesel saga clearly understands the difference, and with each film it has embraced more and more the absurd, the defiance of logic and the laws of physics, to play cars and international espionage. the new swords and sandals show. The biggest leap in this regard was made with ‘Fast & Furious 5’.
The Brazilian Job
The film that followed the half-reboot made by Justin Lin in the fourth installment and with which the director collaborated with Diesel to lead the Fast Saga to jump the shark. Although, in addition to beginning the change from cops and thugs to stratospheric nonsense, he established the matra of “La Familia” with which they have insisted so much ever since. It is also, the best movie in the franchiseand can be seen in streaming through platforms such as Tivify.
In this film we already see Brian O’Conner, Paul Walker’s character, fully turned over to the criminal side in order to rescue Dom Toretto from going to prison. After a crazed rescue (and almost Western for the assault on the locomotive), the Toretto family flees to Rio de Janeiro to hide. However, his biggest threat is a corrupt businessman in the area. In order to claim his freedom, they will recruit a group of old acquaintances to give a great blow that will not leave a puppet with a head.
The successful recovery of the characters from other films, who readapt their charisma to strengthen group dynamics, brings the saga closer to the variant of heist movies with large teams, from ‘Ocean’s Eleven’ to ‘The Italian Job’ but gone through a quite urban and latino filter. A big leap that they take advantage of so that the subtext of the importance of family (found) becomes text (or even supertext, as we see in later installments that take it to meme extremes).
‘Fast & Furious 5’: families and safes
The saga finds a sweet middle ground here, where it sincerely sells the connection between its characters, but also fully accept the nonsense. But without becoming a parody of the kind of cinema it tries to make, far from what its detractors may believe. The best example of how they succeed in their ambitions is how well an angry Dwayne Johnson soaked in baby oil works as an antagonist, or how he pulls off a plan to rob a safe that consists of rolling it around Rio like a ball demolition.
This is where the critics have lost, because the shark has already been jumped in the most conscious way. ‘Fast & Furious 5’ ago a hilarious show, which comes alive with its location and completely sells characters who continue to be interesting in their crazy adventures around the world. It is also a perfect gateway for anyone who wants to get into all the crazy stuff of the franchise. A wonderful move immune to any joke that can be made of it, because it already takes care of making them all.
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