The Fast and Furious franchise has evolved. Long gone are the days of modified cars and street racing and in now, with it’s spin-off Hobbs and Shaw we have a fully-fledged action series in it’s own right. A series that sees what the likes of Mission: Impossible does and thinks ‘lets try that, but with The Rock’
In the 18 years since The Fast and The Furious was released, the series has been through a soft reboot, dropping the ‘the’ from the titles and spurning 8 films before this latest entry and while the cast has remained largely the same, Hobbs & Shaw takes a different route, moving away from Vin Diesel’s Dominic Toretto and his crew and instead focusing on two of the newer introductions in Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) as they attempt to stop Brixton (Idris Elba) from taking control of a deadly virus being carried by Hattie (Vanessa Kirby).
Hobbs & Shaw is fully aware of it’s own worth from the get-go. There’s no attempt to become more serious than it needs to be and the experience is so much better for it. It’s loud, it’s unrelenting, it’s downright ridiculous at times and yet it’s proud of all this. Director David Leitch, who previously co-directed John Wick, has allowed the action to take centre-stage while the relationship (or lack thereof) between Hobbs and Shaw develops alongside it.
While Hobbs and Shaw’s time on camera is spent mostly throwing insults at one another or throwing punches, it’s Vanessa Kirby’s performance as Hattie that really lands. She’s powerful and a character in her own right. Sure we have the odd bit of sexual chemistry through the film, but Hobbs and Shaw does well to avoid making Hattie just a love interest for the lead. Instead the character and indeed Kirby would be more than capable of leading her own feature.
The film is littered with some great cameos (no spoilers) and nods to the wider Fast and Furious universe and though a couple did drag on for a scene or so too long, it can be forgiven as the vast majority of the audience certainly enjoyed it and perhaps this critic is being too critical.
Hobbs & Shaw looks set to be a 4DX hit as well, with a weekend 4DX box-office of $6milllion in the opening week. The Fast & Furious franchise has been perfect match for 4DX and, in addition to the box office success, has led to incredible feedback from global fans. The film’s car heavy action scenes, in conjunction with the 4DX motion synchronized seats, allow moviegoers to feel and experience an unmatched immersive experience that stretches their imagination and draws them into what’s on screen.
Even Idris Elba’s half-cyborg, half-human baddie is pretty strong – in a physical sense and in terms of the actual character – it’s a little crazy, but then so is the whole film.
The stunt-work is up there with the best in the business, as are some of the big action set-pieces and, when you take all of these positives into consideration it is hard to find fault with the film other than the overly-long cameos.
Hobbs & Shaw gets the formula for an action blockbuster absolutely right, while the story is nothing unique the sequences around it make for a non-stop, straight-shot of adrenaline to the eyes-kinda movie and an incredibly enjoyable one at that.
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