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Movie Review: The Fate of the Furious

by Matt Sernaker (Managing Editor),

Dom and his crew are back for more high-octane adventures in The Fate of the Furious. The latest installment in The Fast and the Furious franchise takes the fun and absurdity to new levels as Dom finds himself at the mercy of a hacker known as “Cypher”. When the crew learn of Dom’s betrayal, they will have to not only take down their leader, but save the world as well (no joke).
Minor Spoilers Ahead
“Nothing is more important than family.” We have heard this statement countless times throughout the previous seven Furious films. It is heavily ingrained in the members of Dom’s crew. When Dominic Toretto is blackmailed into working with the villainous Cypher, he learns that the challenges he experienced in the previous films were just the tip of the iceberg. Global safety is at stake, and the crew will be forced to team up with some old foes in order to save the day. What could Cypher possibly possess that could turn Dom against his family? 
Fate features the return of Vin Diesel (Riddick), Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (Central Intelligence), Jason Statham (Crank), Michelle Rodriguez (LOST), Tyrese Gibsen (Transformers), Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Elsa Pataky (Snakes on a Plane), Kurt Russell (Stargate), Nathalie Emmanuel (Game of Thrones). It also features Charlize Theron (The Mask), Scott Eastwood (Suicide Squad), Helen Mirren (The Queen), and Kristofer Hivju (Game of Thrones). The unlikely pairing of Statham and Johnson added up to the most impressive action sequence in the films, with Statham stealing every scene without breaking a sweat. These two took the movie to impressive heights, and I would absolutely love to see a spin-off featuring their respective characters. The prison sequence and plane fight choreography was truly impressive. Theron as Cypher provided an interesting new player to the Furious film, but the weak dialogue unfortunately didn’t play to her strengths. Hiyju’s inclusion is sure to make a lot of Game of Thrones fans excited. His character Rhodes gets a lot of screen time as Cypher’s lead henchmen. In regards to Diesel and the rest of the returning crew, they did a decent job, but didn’t really offer anything new in this installment. Dom turning against his team worked in the context of the story, but it didn’t really lead to new character developments for anyone other than himself. The dynamic duo of Russell and Eastwood also worked well, and added some additional comedy to the film.

Aside from the talented cast, Fate also features many impressive and over the top stunts. The chase sequences are some of the best that we have seen in a while from this franchise, and you can tell that everyone involved was having a blast pushing the limits. While the laws of physics were once again ignored in this film, you will still have a grin ear to ear while watching cars facing off against a submarine (yes, this really happens). 
For those of you who are Jason Statham fans, be sure to keep an eye out for a few homages to both Death Race and Crank. The visual references are pretty fantastic, and were a nice touch by Director F. Gary Gray.
After the satisfying end to Furious 7, many people have been asking if there really was a legitimate reason to do an additional installment in the series. Is there really more that they can do with cars and action sequences that they haven’t done? The Fate of the Furious proves that the answer is unquestionably yes. The unnecessary drama slows the film down at times, but the creative new approach to the cinematography and fight choreography helps to make it stand out from its predecessors. While the film still has its share of faults (mainly the bad dialogue), Fate manages to be the best installment since Fast Five (which I consider to be the best in the series). 
ComicsOnline gives The Fate of the Furious 4 out of 5 potential spin-off films for The Rock and Jason Statham that needs to happen.

About Matt Sernaker

(Managing Editor/Director of Media Relations) Matt interviewed MacGyver once (true story), and was invited on a submarine to the Arctic. It hasn't happened yet, but Matt hopes that some day he will get the call and he and Richard Dean Anderson will go off and have a wacky adventure.

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