Friday is the opening day of Fast Five and I think that calls for a look back at what (in my humble opinion) has been of the best/cheesiest film series in a while.
Lets go way back to 2001 when the very first movie opened: The Fast and the Furious. 2001 was a simpler time when fast cars and hot women were just a dream, then Vin Diesel brought them all together on your movie screen. A solid start to the series, a ton of fun and the first main stream introduction of Vin Diesel and Paul Walker. Unfortunately it is also where we get a full length introduction to Michelle Rodriquez, from this point on she slowly but surely interrupted our pop culture lives in a negative way (i’m looking at you Blue Crush and Lost!).
After a fun, racing, crash filled start, our film series had a hiccup in 2003 with 2 Fast 2 Furious. The name is awesome and frankly just lays it all out there—this is the second film nothin’ fancy about it. Unfortunately, not only is the title not fancy, but the movie follows suit. Paul Walker is back as a man without a home after allowing Vin Diesel to escape in the first movie. He is partnered up with Tyrese (as Rome). Now don’t get me wrong, Tyrese is hot but that don’t carry a movie. Without the original cast of characters (even Ludacris can’t save this film) to back up Paul Walker things just aren’t the same and fans are left wondering if The Fast and the Furious Series is dead.
Luckily, in 2006 the series bounces back with The Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift. Now this was not an audience favorite, or a box office hit, but damn it was good. The movie gives us Lucas Black as Bama Boy, Bow Wow as Twinkie, and Sung Kang as Han. It also gives us the hope at the end that Vin Diesel will be back to series at some point, and that there is more movies to come. Drifting became by obsession in 2006 after watching this movie, and it will be your too if you just give it a chance! Unfortunately, the movie is still high priced at Target ($13 last check—I mean I love the movie but its not worth that much) and for some reason it is not on Instant on Netflix! But worry not, it is on television at regular intervals so check your local listings.
Finally, in 2009 we get back to basics with our original racing crew in tact with Fast & Furious. Taking place between 2 Fast 2 Furious and Tokyo Drift, this movie made all my dreams come true with Michelle Rodriquez’s character Letty was murdered! That made the movie instant must see for me and did not disappoint. All the old boys are back, with the addition of Han, trying to get the man that killed Letty. Good times are had by all, revenge gets got, and we are clearly headed for another movie in the series.
That brings us to today (more precisely midnight tonight when the movie opens) with Fast Five (or as I fondly call it Five Fast Five Furious). All the oldies are back again, with someone from each of the previous movies (disappointingly no Bama Boy) rounding out the crew. They are on the run from Dwayne Johnson aka The Rock. He is the resident cop in this series and seeing him face off with Vin Diesel will not disappoint. Check this early review here and prepare yourself for the ride of your life. And don’t worry, according to Wikipedia (cause it ain’t never wrong) this will not be the last in the series at least one more movie will be made to close things out.