FAST X (2023)
Release Date: 05/19/23 [Cinemas]
Genre: Action. Adventure. Crime.
Studio: Universal Studios
"Dom Toretto and his family are targeted by the vengeful son of drug kingpin Hernan Reyes."
OUR MOVIE REVIEW:
Everybody rev up your engines, crack open a Corona, and gather your family; it's time for one of cinema's most revered events - another Fast and Furious movie is upon us. More than 20 years running and 10 installments deep, we're finally approaching the final gears of this franchise. With Fast X being the first part of a two part finale (maybe three now, I don't even know at this point), it's time for the stakes to get even more severe with the son of Fast Five's villain, Hernan Reyas, Dante returning to have his revenge on Dominic Toretto. In his own words: "the suffering is owed.”
Following a great set price in Rome that launches the plot of Fast X into high gear, the film quickly becomes unfocused and a bit nauseating to follow. Not to an atrocious degree, but it really feels like this film has no idea what to do with what it has in its arsenal. With a lot of focus on Dom's story, everyone feels weirdly sidelined - and don't forget - this is a BIG CAST. While Dom is on his own venture, and Letty is on hers, the rest of the crew almost have nothing to really do here. After the film's inciting incident - Tej, Roman, Han and Ramsey have little to no impact on anything that happens throughout the plot. Whenever they're on screen, it almost feels like the actors are being filmed while on a breezy vacation as the film masquerades the stalling plot development. There are other stars brought in, but they also somewhat feel like a wasted opportunity. Brie Larson is brought onto the gargantuan bill here, and the film does so little with her, it makes me wonder why she was brought on in the first place.
How this thing is made though also perplexes me - Louis Leterrier's head is in the right place here, but also not quite. The set pieces are fun - but a lot of them feel like rehashes from previous installments, and he unfortunately, just really doesn't understand the chemistry that makes this family really what it is. Tej and Roman bickering here doesn't feel like Tej and Roman, it feels like Ludacris and Tyrese Gibson having an ad-libbed fight as themselves. It's like it's forgotten so much of what these characters have been through, and as this is supposed to be the "darkest before the dawn" type entry in this franchise, I feel more emotionally distant from these characters than I've ever been.
Fast X is a fun time, sure, but it feels so undercooked. From the set pieces, to the characters, to the filmmaking - it just feels like Leterrier rushed the production, instead of letting it be left to simmer on the grill so we could have gotten the meaty, juicy and ridiculous steak we deserve with these movies. Fast X just regresses into being a generic action movie with generic action scenes - which ten films in we should be moving forward, not stepping back.