You know you’re living in a recession when Hollywood can’t even come up with original movie titles. “New Model. Original Parts” reads the tagline for this revamp of the smash 2001 hit The Fast and the Furious. It’s true. The people, plot, action, babes, guns, and terrible acting are all the same. It’s the new model people came to see.
Did the film gross $72.5 million in three days based on its plot? For what it’s worth, Dom (Vin Diesel) reteams with undercover FBI agent Brian (Paul Walker) to try and take down a Hispanic drug cartel. The reasons for their ridiculous and altogether implausible matchup aren’t important, you care about the cars and the half naked chicks, right? Don’t worry, director Justin Lin (Tokyo Drift aka The Fast and the Furious Part III) keeps your eyes fixated.
The action isn’t that bad. An opening heist involves a speeding gasoline tanker that is thrilling for a couple seconds, until the finale. And some of the car races are cool, save a pair of CGI-heavy underground tunnel chases in which it’s very difficult to tell what the hell is going on. Aside from the brain numbing effects, everything else is rather dismal.
The acting is so incredibly one-note (not to mention terribly delivered), that several audience members in the theatre were laughing out loud during “emotional” scenes. But that isn’t the point. What’s remarkable is how much money this film has made. The first film grossed $145 million, the second (without Diesel) made $127, the third (without any original stars) did $63. It’s safe to assume that Diesel+fast cars can fill the seats.
I hope you’re not sick of it yet, because these gear heads aren’t going away any time soon. Zoom zoom. D+