Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Jason Statham reprise their smooth cruisin’ roles as Luke Hobbs and Decklan Shaw in the latest Fast and the Furious franchise spin-off, the aptly named Hobbs and Shaw.
When a group of Mi6 agents set out to seize a lethal virus that has the capacity to wipe out the human race from the terrorist group, Eteon, the only agent who gets out alive happens to be Shaw’s sister, Hattie (Vanessa Kirby).
She manages to thwart cyber-enhanced, self-confessed bad guy, Brixton (the ever smooth Idris Elba) and inject the virus-containing capsules into her own hand, where the virus will remain contained for 48 hours.
The CIA (including a cutesy cameo from Ryan Reynolds) recruit odd couple Hobbs and Shaw to track her down and retrieve the virus before it falls back into the wrong hands. They’re racing both Brixton and the clock to save the world again and you can bet it’s a race that will involve fast flashy cars and furious amounts of slow-motion action shots.
If you like what you’ve heard up to this point, you’re almost guaranteed to enjoy Hobbs and Shaw, which is a film that clearly knows its audience and has honed in on them to maximum effect.
David Leitch’s direction lends the film stylistic flare. When there are explosions they are enormous, when there are action scenes they are long and painstakingly choreographed and when there are gadgets they are high tech and up to your eyeballs.
It’s a pity the writing wasn’t as well handled. The jokes in the film are funny but rarely hilarious. The sentimental dialogue, on the other hand, is next-level schmaltzy forcing family values and the been-there-done-that message that “teamwork makes the dream work” down audience throats. It does work as a stand-alone film though, so if you’re considering dipping your toe in for the first time, don’t let the fact that this is the 11th iteration of the series stop you.
Johnson, Statham and Elba give pretty solid performances and a cameo from Kevin Hart is particularly funny, but many of the scenes involving extras are terribly over-acted, even in a film that is as overdone as Hobbs and Shaw.
The bottom line is that the latest addition to the series delivers in fine fashion everything you’ve come to expect, so if you’ve enjoyed this brand of mindless fun previously then don’t hit the brakes now. With Fast and The Furious 9 due for release next year, it seems the franchise is far from the end of its road.
SEE IT if…
Huge fiery explosions light your fire
You can’t get enough slow-motion action shots
SKIP IT if…
You’re over “Your Mum” jokes
Too hungover to handle head-spinning camera action
It gets 3 stars out of 5.
Not your thing? Read another review.