I.Q.? Number of Sequels? Bottles of beer on the wall? I don’t get it.


Theatrical Release Date: 05/24/2013
Director: Justin Lin
Cast: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Luke Evans, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Sung Kang, Gina Carano, Elsa Pataky, Gal Gadot, Shea Whigham
Rated: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action and mayhem throughout, some sexuality and language.
Runtime: 2 hours, 10 minutes


Trailer:

Just keep your mouth closed. Eloquence has never been your strong suit.

Building on the momentum of Fast Five, racing into theaters now is Fast & Furious 6 (or just Furious 6 according to the opening credits). For those who didn’t watch any of the previous installments, a quick recap of the entire series is in the opening credits – though this isn’t Harry Potter. You can drop in or drop out at any time and catch onto what’s going on pretty quickly. No one’s ever said the screenwriting was the heart and soul of the proceedings.

In any case, with what continuity the series does have, this one picks up immediately after the last one (if you waited for the extra scene in those credits). Our anti-heroes are avoiding extradition to the U.S. while enjoying the millions of dollars they snatched while in the process of briefly teaming up with U.S. Diplomatic Security Service agent Luke Hobbs (Dwayne “everyone still calls me The Rock” Johnson). The possibility that a former member of their crew (Michelle Rodriguez) is still alive draws them out to once again team up with Hobbs, who this time needs their help in order to capture a highly skilled heist crew led by a man named Owen Shaw (Luke Evans).

What takes place over the course of the two-plus hour runtime is some of the most consistent and exciting action since … well … the last Fast & Furious movie actually. When the series transitioned from being solely about street racing and became focused on the heist elements, it both broadened its fan base and gave itself a structure that was so dearly needed. The genre is simple enough for screenwriters to follow, and even with all of the hammy acting and some truly terrible dialogue, all of that gets washed away from the brain during the next adrenaline packed sequence of muscles and cars.

The ladies take a bit more of a central role here and that’s nice to see. The addition of MMA fighter turned actress Gina Carano goes a long way and her fights (yes, plural) with Michelle Rodriguez are probably the best fights in the film (and there are plenty more of them between the many other characters). This is also the first film starring The Rock this year I’m going to want to see again, after disappointing results in films like Snitch, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, and Pain & Gain.

Getting down to it, Fast & Furious 6 delivers on its premise and is easily the best action movie of 2013 to this point. Much of that action is ridiculously unrealistic and I nearly fell out of my seat in relation to one stunt which rivals Twister for believability. However, that’s fine because the over the top nature of the action is consistent throughout. There’s also a decent amount of comedy thrown into the mix to break the tensions and while there are still a few too many scenes where the script attempts to let this collection of models attempt to act, that’s counterbalanced by other elements.

And like with so many movies these days, wait for a bonus scene in the credits. It will give you a hint at what’s coming in the 7th film (which is slated for a July 11th, 2014 release).

4 out of 5