Fast 9 brings back old faces and brings in new ones

Hey fast fans, Slick Dungeon here. I’m back to review the ninth movie in the Fast and Furious franchise. There will be spoilers from some of the previous films as well as this one in this review. If that sort of thing bothers you, watch the movies and then come on back here to read the review. And if you need a refresher on the franchise you can check out my previous reviews. You can read my review of  The Fast and the Furious here2 Fast 2 Furious here, Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift hereFast and Furious here, Fast Five here,  Fast and Furious 6 here,  Furious 7 here, Hobbs and Shaw here and Fate of the Furious here

The Fast and Furious films have consistently tried to outdo themselves. Each one tells a bigger story, has bigger stunts, and introduces us to new characters. It’s a little hard to believe but if you watch the whole series from start to finish you can see how a little group of street racers from Los Angeles turn into a team of elite super spies who consistently save the world. If you get over the silliness of the premise, the ride is always fun for these films. The ninth film came back with more story, more stunts, and new connections to tie everything together.

Did it work as a big blockbuster film or would this have been better left on the shelf?

Let’s dig in and find out.

Spoilers follow below!

We Go Back to the beginning

Way back in the first movie we found out Dom began his life of crime when he beat a man nearly to death with a wrench. And we learned he did that because the man was the race car driver Dom felt was responsible for his father’s death. What we didn’t know was the involvement of Dom’s younger brother Jakob. Jakob was the last person to touch the Toretto engine before the race car blew up. Dom realizes Jakob had cut a fuel line in the engine and Dom forever blames Jakob for the death of their father.

Once Dom is out of prison he tells Jakob he’ll race him. And the result of the wager on the race will determine the fate of both men forever. Dom tells Jakob if Jakob wins he can come back home and they’ll be a family. But if Dom wins, Jakob has to leave forever and never return. Then we see what we can assume is Dom’s first, and most consequential race of his entire lifetime. Dom wins and Jakob leaves.

I should mention in the movie all of this gets revealed in smaller flashbacks throughout the movie while the events of the larger story unfolds.

Thirty years later Dom is raising his son Brian aka “Little B” with his wife Letty. One day Roman, Tej and Ramsey show up at Dom’s door and tell him Mr. Nobody has been attacked by rogue agents and the villain from the last movie, Cipher has been abducted. Dom agrees to help on the mission to find Nobody and secure Cipher only because he knows Jakob is involved. At the site of the crash where Mr. Nobody’s plane went down, the team finds half of a weapon called Project Ares. This is a thing that can hack into and take control of any computer controlled system. Before the team can do anything else, Jakob attacks them and recovers this half of the Ares device. Most of the team is pretty shocked to find out Dom has a brother since he’s all about family and has never mentioned this guy.

The team eventually gets away and they learn the device has something to do with Han who died several films ago. Mia and Letty decide to go to Tokyo to see what the connection is. Jakob is working with a dude named Otto who is basically a wannabe dictator who is the actual son of a dictator. Cipher tells Jakob where the other half of Ares is.

To find Jakob, Dom goes to see the one guy who might know. This is Buddy (Michael Rooker) who was their father’s mechanic and took Jakob in after Dom chased him out of town.

While in Tokyo, Mia and Letty discover that not only is Han alive, he’s been protection a girl named Ellie for years. We get a sort of complicated backstory of how Han is still alive and it basically boils down to Mr. Nobody setting up a fake death for Han so Shaw can’t get to him, and then using Han to try to recover Ares. While trying to recover Ares, Ellie’s parents are killed and Han does the noble thing and protects and raises her.

Meanwhile, Tej and Roman meet up with Sean Boswell who was the main character in Tokyo drift, his buddy Twinkie, and a rocket scientist named Earl Hu. Yes. This is the movie where a Pontiac Fiero goes to outer space. These dudes are trying to figure out how to strap a jet rocket to a car.

Dom finds out from Queenie Shaw exactly where Jakob is because she takes him right there as she is stealing high priced diamonds and cars. Jakob basically tells Dom he has the chance to walk away and never come back. We all know Dom’s never going to do that.

Dom gets arrested but he’s rescued by a woman named Leysa (Cardi B.). Yes. This is the movie with a cameo from Cardi B. because, why not?

From this point on there is a whole bunch of action involving high speed chases, heavy duty electromagnets, a Pontiac Fiero going to space to crash into a satellite, and John Cena as Jakob tossing around like dozens of dudes.

In the end, Dom, of course, forgives Jakob and apologizes because he knows he walked away from his own family. Things end with everyone relatively happy. But we do get a mid credit scene where Shaw is beating on a punching bag where there is an actual human zipped up inside it. And right around then is when Han shows up at Shaw’s door, shocking Shaw since Han is supposed to be dead.

In Conclusion

This movie is sort of insane. I mean putting a car into space and expecting us to believe it? I mean, I don’t believe it but it was fun anyway. Bringing back old dead characters? This is not the first franchise to do that and it won’t be the last. Have a long lost brother come back into the fold of Dom Toretto’s family? Yeah, sure why not?

It’s pretty much a ridiculous film full of almost nothing but nonsense. However, it’s still at its heart about family both found and blood, and it’s an enjoyable wild ride. It’s not the best in the franchise but the stunts here are probably the wildest of them all.

In a lot of ways this franchise has already gone too far with what it does. But since it has, we might as well let them finish and just be along for the ride, whatever comes next.

Speedily yours,

Slick Dungeon


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