**½

This code you live by makes you predictable. In our line of work predictable makes you vulnerable. I can reach out and break you any time I want.

Luke Evans (Shaw) driving a "ramp car" in Furious 6, © 2013 Universal Pictures.

Luke Evans (Shaw) driving a “ramp car” in Furious 6, © 2013 Universal Pictures.

It was truly difficult for me to give this flaming pile of garbage 2&½ stars. It was an impressive pile of garbage with fancy cars and fun actors and explosions and the flames were humongous, but it still made about as much sense as lighting a trashcan on fire and standing around watching it. I say, get some marshmallows and some cheap “domestic” beer, then get ready to feel the heat and enjoy some laughs. For instance, there is one scene were Vin Diesel flies out of a car across a divider to tackle Michelle Rodriguez who is flying perpendicular to him off of the barrel of a tank. When they land, about 25 feet away, I hope that Justin Lin gave the audience a pause for the laughter that ensues. This scene is certainly a sequel to the Fast 5 moment where Diesel and Paul Walker drive a car off a cliff into a lake without dying.

Michelle Rodriguez (Letty) and Vin Diesel (Dom) mid-air. As you can guess, they both are about to die. © 2013, Universal Pictures.

Michelle Rodriguez (Letty) and Vin Diesel (Dom) mid-air. As you can guess, they both are about to die. © 2013, Universal Pictures.

One major criticism of Fast 5 was that it was a street racing movie with no legitimate scenes of street racing. 6 changes that. There were tons of cool and interesting driving sequences. 5 played fast and loose with story and logic, but this just throws logic and a coherent plot out of the window. Here are my top 12 dumpster fire worthy moments:

  1. The opening credits–they showed clips from all of the previous movies without any narrative arc. It was like as if someone edited together clips with the clearance to see those clips, but not to read the current script.
  2. The world’s longest runway—in a climatic scene there is a plane that lands about halfway down a runway in front of some cars. The plane never stops. And after a minute it has vehicles on it. And then accelerates. And then tries to take off. For about ten minutes. Takeoff for this “planet”, as Tyrese Gibson calls it, would require at least 180 mph. Ignoring the fact that a car was driving faster than it by the end, this would still require a runway between 7 and 17 MILES.
  3. Elsa Pataky’s and Vin Diesel’s relationship–first she is with him and sleeping naked, then he leaves to find Michelle Rodriguez, then she is not heard from at all—she is just chilling with Jordana Brewster and the baby—then she saves the baby and…then the movie gives us no information until the last scene where she has a badge again and says that her family has always been the police. She was a Brazilian cop for like 2 years and quickly sided with some criminals AND went into hiding with one of them. She has always been a cop like Donnie Brasco was always in the mafia.
  4. Jordana Brewster’s failure to escape with her baby–she is literally handing the baby down to Elsa when she shakes her head no and chooses not follow Elsa, instead she runs back into the house to get kidnapped, or something. Just a nonsensical scene.
  5. The Rock having only one fellow officer on his team–as impressive as Gina Carano’s Riley is, it seems stupid to have no other agents along with him, just these Fast and Furious Fools.
  6. The first raid to get Luke Evans (Shaw)–ignoring how much of a disaster it was, Interpol wired up their prisoner and had him walk in to get killed by their target directly in front of his front door. Also, had they shown up two minutes earlier they might have just captured Evans.
  7. That the Rock puts the gun to the head of a NATO general in order to hypothetically save Brewster’s life, even if it costs the death of millions of people by letting Evans leave with the super computer chip. This was worse than him destroying a room with the prisoner at Interpol. He has replaced Paul Walker as the poster child for NOT A GOOD LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER.
  8. Vin Diesel drives a car through the front of a burning plane. And he magically has the briefcase with magical micro chip.
  9. NATO decides to transport the secret micro chip in an unmanned tank inside of a big truck–I think that NATO’s idea was, well, if anyone is clever enough to watch Dark Knight Rises and tries to hop into our big sturdy truck, they deserve to have an armed, unguarded tank as a bonus.
  10. In a movie that takes place over a span of approximately 5 days, Paul Walker leaves London to fly to California, where he spends 24 hours in jail, to learn something that Evans could have just told any character at any point in time. I say this because when he returns with the “crucial” information as to why Rodriguez has become a villain-criminal, Vin says, “Don’t tell me. That was for you.”
  11. Someone has amnesia.
  12. The ads for this say Fast & Furious 6, but in the movie itself the title is “Furious 6.” I think that refers to Vin, Ludacris, Gal Gadot, Tyrese, Walker and Sung Kang. But I would hesitate to call them furious. Vin is mostly slow spoken. Ludacris and Tyrese seem to be having fun cracking jokes. Gal Gadot seems down for whatever. Walker gets seriously scared when people try to kill him and legitimately furious when his wife has been kidnapped. And Sung Kang seems melancholy. Fast 6 would have made more sense.
No Rock yet!?

5 of the Furious 6: Sung Kang, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Gal Gadot, Vin Diesel, and Paul Walker. © 2013 Universal Pics.

All that madness aside this movie had some major positives: It is a truly multi-ethnic movie; there are cross racial relationships; there are strong female characters; and more action than all of the other Fast & Furious movies combined. And, in spite of the nonsensical opening clips, the traditional credits before the movie were a pleasant surprise.

Hart attack!

The Rock flying clothesline on Kim Kold with the Vin’s assistance. © 2013 Universal Pics.

Oh yeah and THE F’N ROCK was in this. I felt like his best moment came while clotheslining his larger, German-er version. A nice thing about the cheesy matching team of bad guys, is that the film itself acknowledged what it had done. Indeed, Tyrese gets off some good lines about them. If I could have edited this script, I would have either tried to make it better, or let it move into so bad it’s good territory. Instead, the movies navigates amidst all three places with too much in the bland middle.

Advertisements