Sunday, 19 May 2013

REVIEW - FAST & FURIOUS 6


If Fast & Furious 6 is anything less than what you expect it to be, then you are either a fool or a lunatic. It's a film about macho men and gorgeous girls performing outrageous stunts in all manner of vehicles, some quick, others even quicker, and all deadly. In an acknowledgement of the fact that this is the sixth film in a franchise which outlasted its welcome roughly at the same time its first film's opening title rolled, Fast & Furious 6 aims to do something different than its predecessors whilst doing precisely what has made those predecessors so popular. In dumbass Hollywood blockbuster terms, that means doing the same thing, only more often and more noisily. Gosh is this film noisy. I suppose an aeroplane crash would be noisy, but the question is whether or not the aeroplane crash, and the tank crash, and the numerous car crashes were even necessary. In this context, I guess so. I wouldn't argue something preposterous like there being a 'beauty' or a 'poetry' or even an 'artistry' to what Justin Lin and his cast and crew have accomplished here - film is most certainly a thriving art form, but Fast & Furious 6 seeks to contribute nothing to it as an art form. But it knows its place, and it works it like a pro, like a film that has learned the lessons of five inferior installments (except Paul Walker). It's a bore most of the time, and spends far too long putting words in its actors' mouths rather than steering wheels in their hands, but when the action gets going, well, does it ever. There's a solid 30 minutes of almost relentless action that keeps gaining momentum, and defying goodness knows how many laws of physics and/or common sense, to the extent that it may leave you slackjawed and short of breath. The sexism that has fuelled the franchise is alive and well enough, although diminished somewhat, and replaced by a dash of homophobia in one oddly ironic moment which I'm not sure the filmmakers are aware of. At least they're aware of the sexism. I'm not sure if that's better or worse. Kim Kold, star of last year's Teddy Bear, makes an appearance, as does Thure Lindhardt, of all people, and the production design is by Jan Roelfs, off of Peter Greenaway films. I say, shouldn't this be at Cannes? Sooner this than Gatsby...