Furious 7 — RIP-Paul’s Last Race

“This time it ain’t just about being fast.”

— Dom

“The Academy should honor him and officially change his name to Paul Driver because that’s what he loved doing.”

Who’s fast? 🏃️💨

Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham), the brother of the last film’s fallen antagonist, wants revenge. Deckard killed Han in Tokyo, and now he’s going to kill Dom and his family. Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell) offers to help Dom kill Shaw if Dom will help rescue/steal a hacker named Ramsey and her omniscient computer program, God’s Eye. Then Dom can use God’s Eye to find Shaw. They go to Azerbaijan, then to Abu Dhabi, and finish with a battle in Los Angeles. Good guys win.

When they do pick up Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel, who you might recognize from Game of Thrones) she describes the members of the team thusly:

  • Dom — Alpha
  • Brian — ex-cop
  • Letty — Mrs. Alpha
  • Tej — tech guy
  • Roman — joker

Roman protests and says he’s a double alpha. Nothing against Tyrese, but I don’t really like him as the comic relief guy. I am a big fan of Tej and Ramsey’s unspoken chemistry, however. They bond over technology. Tej proves his value to Ramsey by punching out a bad guy in an IT room. I want them together like Han and Gisele.

Who’s furious? 😡

  • Shaw vs. Dom. These men crash their cars straight into each other twice. (Is that winning or losing the game of chicken?) They ruin four cars and still have to street fight with pipes and wrenches to settle their differences.
  • Letty vs. Letty, because she’s real torn up about having a m n e s i a
  • Hobbs vs. Shaw. I think these guys would really make for a compelling dynamic duo in a spin-off movie.
  • Cars vs. trees
  • Cars vs. mountains
  • Drone vs. cars
  • Hobbs vs. drone

How fast? 🏎⏲️

  • 242 mph! The fastest speed mentioned or shown in any film yet. This is the top speed of the super expensive orange car owned by the billionaire Jordanian prince. They don’t reach this top speed though. They instead drive the car out of a skyscraper, and then out of a second skyscraper before it falls 600 feet and smashes into the ground.
  • This is the longest movie yet, clocking in at 2 hours 17 minutes. And that’s the theatrical cut. The extended edition is three minutes longer.

How family? 👪

The word “family” is said six times, a 46% decrease from the last film.

How furious? 🌡️

  • Shaw has already trashed a London hospital by the time the movie starts.
  • Hobbs and Shaw have a glass-breaking fist fight in an office. Hobbs gets to use Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s signature Rock Bottom wrestling move on Shaw.
  • Shaw tried to blow up Dom, Mia, Brian and little Jack with a mail bomb.
  • Shaw uses guns and/or grenades in every interaction with another human.
  • A four-car battering ram was used to attack a military convoy.
  • Dom drove off a cliff.
  • Dom can lift a car.
  • Hobbs flexed his arm cast off.
  • Hobbs personally shot down a drone and then double-tapped the camera on it.
  • Dom stomped and the top floor of a parking garage collapsed, taking Shaw down.

How bizzare 🤯

  • Dom and Letty make it back to RACE WARS as in the first movie. With a name like that you expect a big showdown to happen, especially since it didn’t in the first movie — but no. They’re there for one race, Letty punches a dude named Hector, and then they leave.
  • Brian wore a hoodie for the team’s aerial/vehicular assault on the convoy in Azerbaijan, and he left it unzipped the whole time.
He is jumping from the hood of one car into the blown-out back end of an armored truck. And he just leaves that hoodie flapping in the wind. This bothered me more than any of the movie’s creative physics.
  • Four gold-dusted women danced in the penthouse of the Etihad Towers while T-Pain DJed.
  • Mr. Nobody delivers a line while in a car — “You didn’t really think I was going to walk in there naked, did you?” —in reference to wearing body armor.
His body armor looks like a gray Aquaman suit.
  • In the The Big Lebowski, Walter delivers a similar line while in a car“You didn’t think I was rolling out of here naked, did you!” — in reference to carrying a gun.
Walter is more furious than anyone in the F&F franchise.
  • Brian didn’t die. Even though the audience knows it’s Brian’s last movie — since Paul Walker died — the big character death that *almost* happens is Dom’s, when he’s slumped outside an LA parking garage being cradled by Letty, who suddenly remembers everything — even stuff the audience doesn’t know.
  • Dom and Letty got secretly married in the Dominican Republic, and they used a diamond cross necklace as a hastily improvised wedding ring.

What I learned today

1. I should wear Under Armor, drink Rockstar and Corona and use Dell computers.

2. Stakes matter. My criticism of F&F 6 was that their goal didn’t have emotional stakes because they couldn’t do anything with the computer chip they were supposed to get. In this one they’re still basically going after a computer chip, but once they get it they will then be able to find Shaw and take him down. Small tweak, but it made a difference.

3. Family can actually die. Gal Gadot was not in this film, so Gisele is really dead. Han is dead. Since Paul Walker died in real life, Brian will be no more. He died before shooting for this film was done, so they did a ton of re-shoots and CGI and used his brothers as body doubles to finish the movie.

4. And death is very profitable. This movie grossed over a billion dollars worldwide, and it broke records for how quickly it did so. The music video of the end-credits song, dedicated to Paul Walker, broke YouTube view records at the time. Incidentally, while I’m not a huge fan of this song in particular, the music for Furious 7 is noticeably better than the last few.

I’ll see you again, tomorrow for F8.

Standout quotes with no context

  • “I was scared you’d be disappointed with domestic life.”
  • “Hello Kitty’s awake.”
  • “Goddamn IT guys!”
  • “I remember everything. It came to me like a flood.”
  • “Cars don’t fly!”
  • “Those monks got it right.”
  • “Words ain’t even been invented yet.”
  • “Completely wrong thinking. I like it.”

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