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Movie Review: Fast Five

Not that I didn't expect it, but the action in this film was just in your face! I admit, I only saw the original Fast and the Furious movie - and probably saw only glimpses of the rest - but when I saw the trailer of this fifth installment, I knew it was a film not to be missed - and I was right!

Suffice it to say, I thoroughly enjoyed the film. I mean, it did change the formula pretty much - away from car races in order to become a heist movie - but despite that, the story, I thought, conserved the automotive fetish and, yes, the lovely girls. Haha. I was actually pleasantly surprised that the focus now was on the characters and story. A far cry from the humble beginnings of the series.

I'm not saying though that the plot was anything groundbreaking - in parts, it's actually non existent. But the franchise is now five movies deep and if you're expecting for a meaningful story or a thought provoking action drama, you should already know that you are in the wrong place. Fast Five was all about the action, the cars and the girls, and I personally think that it delivered that in spades.

Sure, a lot of the stunts were very far-fetched, unrealistic and way over the top, but I didn't really mind because it's fun and exciting. Explosions, car chases, free-running, you name it. It definitely kept me on the edge of my seat, and occasionally threw me off it. Haha. I thought the action set-pieces were executed perfectly and most of the stunt work were brilliantly interlaced with visual effects. The hand to hand choreography wasn't as visceral as compared to say, any Bourne film, but that's just me nitpicking already.

As for the performances, I found most of them competent. Vin Diesel was overflowing with charisma and credibility for the role. Paul Walker was a little bland along with Jordana Brewster, but I thought they've improved. I enjoyed both Tyrese Gibson and Ludicaris as they were incredibly hysterical. Their rapport with each other provided a lot of great laughs throughout. Oh, and Gal Gadot was interestingly bada*s! Very nice.

All that being said, the movie wasn't perfect. I thought the street racing sequences felt like afterthoughts and the relationship between Vin Diesel and the Brazilian cop wasn't developed enough. And though the pacing was relatively decent, I thought the movie ran on for a little bit longer than what I would have liked. Good thing, the second half put me on the edge of my seat with excellent action choreography that somehow made me forget some boring patches prior to that.

Fast Five wasn't grand cinema - even as far as action movies went. No ground was broken, the schemes were too elaborate and the physics weren't very probable. But movies should be judged primarily on how well they can hold up to the promise of what they try to be. And yes, the movie succeeded on that. A great piece of entertainment.

Movie Review: Fast Five Reviewed by DAM on 3:47 AM Rating: 5

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