Fast and Furious 7 - Film Review

Vin Diesel (left) and Paul Walker in 'Fast and Furious 7'.

Vin Diesel (left) and Paul Walker in 'Fast and Furious 7'.

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Previous films from the ‘Fast and Furious’ franchise left me incensed but believe it or not, ‘Fast and Furious 7’ is, at times, ridiculously entertaining and the heartfelt tribute to the late Paul Walker is to be commended.

If you’ve been living beyond the reach of modern cinema for the last while, ‘Fast and Furious’ movies involve a lot of fast cars, scantily clad women, punching, shouting and destruction.

The franchise epitomises the ‘leave your brain at home’ genre and since its first outing in 2001 it has gone on to not only make a lot of money but to be extremely successful.

‘Fast and Furious 7’ picks up exactly where the previous film left off.

Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) has been left in a coma by Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) and his crew of gun toting gas guzzlers.

Desperate for revenge, Owen’s brother, Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) sets out to kill Toretto and his cronies.

Toretto is then contacted by Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell) and agrees to help him track down a hacker called ‘Ramsey’ in return for assistance in tracking down Deckard.

What follows is a two hours plus of some of the most ridiculous and undoubtedly implausible action sequences you will ever witness.

Implausibility aside, the action sequences in this film are to be commended and they are a massive improvement on the utterly awful scenes from ‘Fast and Furious 6’.

Statham is terribly good at playing the villain but he’s not given enough time to shine. I enjoyed his character Deckard Shaw so much that within minutes of first seeing him on the big screen I soon started to cheer him on.

Jason Statham who plays Deckard Shaw in 'Fast and Furious 7'.

Jason Statham who plays Deckard Shaw in 'Fast and Furious 7'.

Thankfully, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s scenes are limited to mono-syllabic moments of dialogue and bone crushing fights.

The only film I ever enjoyed Johnson in was Michael Bay’s very underrated ‘Pain and Gun’ but going on his display here I think he would struggle to deliver post never mind lines from a script.

The film’s plot is as complex as a sheet of blank paper but that’s okay because the action sequences are tremendously satisfying.

There are moments that are so cringe worthy you won’t be able to stop from clenching your derrière and at 137 minutes the film is about 45 minutes too long, so that it fails to remain engaging throughout but overall it’s a satisfactory addition to the franchise.

Implausibility aside, the action sequences in this film are to be commended and they are a massive improvement on the utterly awful scenes from ‘Fast and Furious 6’

Andrew Quinn - Derry Journal film critic

One of the main stars of the ‘Fast and Furious’ films, Paul Walker, died during filming and the cast use the film’s ending as an opportunity to pay their tributes to him.

Though I found the final few scenes somewhat overly sentimental I was prepared to turn a blind eye. Star of the franchise, Vin Diesel, does labour over how much he misses Walker but by the time the film reaches its ending it’s nothing more than a minor misgiving.

Yes. You’ve guessed it. A sequel should follow.

VERDICT: 3/5 - It’s overly long and at times, cringe worthy beyond belief but the tasteful action sequences help ‘Fast and Furious 7’ stand up as an entertaining addition to the franchise. Villain Jason Statham is not given enough screen time but the tribute to the late Paul Walker towards the end is heartfelt if nothing else. A refreshing attempt to breath life back into the franchise and it would be no surprise if Vin Diesel et al were to ride again one last time.