Disclaimer: The following trailer contains many violent scenes.
What's it about?
Spies. Tough guys. Weapons. The end of the world. This adrenaline-packed action comedy is a spin-off and number eight in the Fast & the Furious franchise. You don’t need to have seen any of the Fast & the Furious movies before to enjoy this movie; it works as a stand-alone film.
If you’re a Dwayne Johnson or Jason Statham fan, you’re going to get a kick out of their love/hate buddy relationship. Directed by David Leitch, this movie is exactly what it promises: high octane. David Leitch was a stuntman in John Wick and Atomic Blonde.
If you like the trailer, you’ll like the movie. I attended a screening in a theater in Lehi, Utah, that had a cool way to showcase scenes from the movie in a lobby feature: two chairs were rigged to rumbling seats that reacted to the action sequences. That’s how the movie feels. Most people agree the movie is pretty ridiculous but admit that doesn’t mean it’s not fun.
Is it any good? (Grade: B+)
The movie is very self-aware, which allows it to be more fun and playful than any of the other Fast & Furious movies in the franchise. Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham have great chemistry together and have some hilarious banter. The supporting cast is also fantastic: Idris Elba, Vanessa Kirby, Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds, and Kevin Hart. Dwayne Johnson’s actual cousin (Joe Anoa’i) plays his brother in the movie. Johnson performs his signature wrestling movies “The Samoan Drop” and “The Spear” during some action sequences. Fans of The Crown will enjoy seeing the lovely Vanessa Kirby play Jason Statham’s sister. That award-winning TV series is fantastic, by the way.
There is a lot of humor and funny fight sequences. The stunt team does impressive work with hand-to-hand combat, as well as with cool spy gadgets. There are a lot of pop-culture references and Easter eggs for fans. The soundtrack hits hard, just like the stars. Some might say this movie is filled with “toxic masculinity.” If overcharged testosterone bothers you, do NOT watch this movie.
The movie is certainly ridiculous and even cheesy at times, but that’s part of the schtick. You get to visit Samoa during act three, which makes the film look really different from the rest of the series. It’s a long movie, but you’ll get out of the heat for a couple of hours.
Is it okay for kids? (Rating: PG-13)
Here are some things to be aware of:
- LOTS of violence with a high body count and some blood.
- Women showing lots of skin and cleavage.
- Some profanity, including 1 F-bomb, 12 scatological terms, 24 anatomical terms, 9 religious exclamations.
- Scenes depicting crime.
- Suggestive language and gestures referring to body parts and sexual relations.
- Bare-chested men.
- Some kissing.
- Some men are tortured with electronic shocks.
- LOTS of explosions and destruction.
- Frequent name-calling.
- Use of alcohol and mention of drugs.
Any worthwhile messages?
Like all of the movies in the Fast & the Furious franchise, the theme of this movie is the importance of family. Some other uplifting quotes and messages include:
- “It’s never over ‘til it’s over.” —Shaw (Jason Statham)
- “Remember who you are.” —Shaw
- “Never, never give up.” —Shaw
- The importance of home and truth
Some interesting lines that also illustrate themes and worthwhile messages in the movie:
- “You may believe in machines, but we believe in people.” —Hobbs
- “The key to immortality is living a life worth remembering.” —Bruce Lee, quoted by Hobbs