I am not even going to pretend that I did not like this movie. I’m just going to jump right in and tell you that I enjoyed the fool out of it. How’s the song go? “I’m not too shy to show I love you, I got no regrets.” That is exactly how I feel about this movie.
Thor conned me into going to see Fast and Furious 6, last week. Neither of us had ever seen any of the first five, but he was into the idea of all the cars and explosions, and I was into the idea of taking a nap in the big theater chair, so off we went. I live “blogged” the movie on my Facebook feed and annoyed half of my friends list into blocking me, but I was alternately so delighted and so…delighted by inanity, that I couldn’t help myself.
I think the basic plot of any F&F movie is bad boys and girls with hearts of gold, with cool cars, race truly bad boys and girls with cool cars. They have some fist fights, some shoot ’em ups, and some cartoony love stories, and good prevails over evil in some sort of Robin Hood way. I’m not going to worry about all that because the movie makers don’t. The plot, the dialog and the acting are about as complex as an episode of Scooby Doo. But, they are also as satisfying.
Here are two things that truly surprised me:
Feminists Could Enjoy This. Even though the women are obvious set decoration (I think it is fair to say that the men are set decoration, too. I mean, you don’t hire The Rock, Tyrese, or that blond one for their acting ability) and only get about 1/4 as much screentime as the men, their storylines were as strong as the men’s, they were portrayed as important, valuable members of their teams, and they were all physically and emotionally strong. They are all good at their jobs. No wilting flowers. No screw ups. They rescue the men just as often as the men rescue them, and they make the same important sacrifices for the good of their team. I felt good about the women, their stories, and their plot twists. It was a movie a little girl could watch, and walk away saying, “I want to be like her!” And a little girl could truly get in on the role playing at recess, too.
It is Truly Diverse. The casting is a feat of diversity, and should be studied and modeled after. You know how in college brochures, you have the pictures with the two white people, one Latino, one Asian, and one black guy? You might think that a cast made up of an Italian, White Guy, Samoan Thor (that’s what the caller ID said!), two Black Guys, an Asian Guy, a Latina, a White Girl, a vaugely Italian girl, and two European Girls would look like that brochure. It did not. It was startlingly seamless as far as the ethnic variations went. I was amazed. I mean, I was amazed. No one mentioned race. No one mentioned ethnicity. There was one moment of a character pointing out the similarities in the bad guy’s team, but it wasn’t College Brochure even on the evil side of the coin. It was two teams assembled with the best person for the job, and on either team, the best people were a melting pot of variety. It was a movie anyone could see, and find someone who looked like him/her to “be” when playing outside later.
I’ll tell you, I went into this movie expecting to want to strangle myself with my own hair–like I did watching G.I. Joe. I didn’t. I got into it. I had fun. Thor had fun. We walked out talking about the cool things we’d seen, and which characters we liked. And I will SO be going to see F&F7.
4 out of 5 stars