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The One-Line Summary: Despite thinking they’d left their criminal lives behind, Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) and the gang are called into action to steal a computer program called “The God’s Eye”, which can turn digital devices into a weapon by tracking any person on Earth, though that’s only half the problem since a man named Shaw is out to kill the whole team for revenge after the events of the last movie put his brother in a coma.
The Two-Line Blurb: Directed by James Wan, this latest entry in the long-running series pushes the envelope of believability to a whole new level of extreme, which has been a trademark of the franchise, giving ‘car stunts’ a whole new name as they find more and more creative ways to use vehicles in explosive, jaw-dropping ways. While much of the film is purposefully (wildly) over-the-top, with many of the action scenes done with practical effects (including parachuting a bunch of cars out of a massive cargo plane), the great chemistry between the leads and a fitting and surprisingly touching farewell to series regular Paul Walker, (who was killed in an unrelated car accident) make this high-octane, super-charged ride one worth taking.
The Three-Line Set-up: This moment is all about the craziness and begins when the crew are told in order to steal the ‘The God’s Eye’, they need the help of a master computer hacker named Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) who is being held captive in Azerbaijan. They mount a rescue by dropping their cars from the sky and landing in hot pursuit of a well-guarded convoy traveling through treacherous, cliff-lined peaks. Once they have her, they head to the Middle East, to Abu Dhabi where a billionaire has got the flashdrive containing the program.
The Four-Line Moment: The team stage a break-in that involves a number of complicated machinations to come together at the Etihad Towers, a series of five enormous glass faced buildings, where the host is sponsoring a lavish birthday party in the upper floors. They discover that on the floor where the party is being held, the billionaire has a brand new, mint-condition, cherry-red Lykan HyperSport, one of the most expensive, fastest cars every produced, and to the guys who have made a career working on and driving the best and most powerful cars in the world, it’s a target that is too tempting to resist. Their motivation is compounded when Shaw shows up with grenade-launching machine gun, so when Toretto and Brian O’Conner (Walker) hop inside and try to get away, their only way out is straight through a window, which isn’t such a good idea since they are almost 80 floors up in the air. They crash through the glass and sail spectacularly across the chasm to the next building, landing in an empty floor that is still under construction, and realize the brakes no longer work and so step on the gas and drive straight through and out the other side. A spell-binding action scene that experts agree is actually the most plausible car stunt of the movie, the moment is an unabashed celebration of the genre and ludicrously fun to watch whether you admit it or not.
The Five-Word Review: All cars, action, girls, fun.
Chris Morgan, Gary Scott Thompson(characters)
Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson