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Film Review: Another Fumble for the Fast and Furious Franchise, “Fast X” Is Disastrous

Film poster: “Fast X”

Fast X (Louis Leterrier, 2023) 1 out of 4 stars.

My most recent “Fast and Furious” experience proved to be one of great disappointment. Lo and behold, the franchise continues to dive off the deep end with ludicrous sequences, lack of storytelling, and overall lazy idea. Director Louis Leterrier (The Takedown) heads the newest entry in a franchise that has since lost its street cred and succumbed to bringing the most outlandish visuals possible to thrill the masses. Fast X not only achieves nothing in terms of expanding the F&F lore, but continues to rely on a booming soundtrack, the witty remarks of loveable characters, and pure adrenaline to create what I suppose some would call a rousing narrative.

The film immediately introduces Dante Reyes, played with comical folly by Jason Momoa (Sweet Girl), as he hunts down Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel, Bloodshot) and his crew/family as revenge for the death of his father. Dante compromises Dom’s arch nemesis, Cipher (Charlize Theron, Bombshell), and gains access to her high-tech arsenal. With a massive force after him, Dominic must try to stay one step ahead of his new enemy, and protect his family from destruction.

Jason Momoa in FAST X ©Universal Pictures

Naturally, Fast X tries to include as many supporting-character moments and cameos as possible, once again riding on the humor from Tyrese Gibson (The System) and Ludacris (The Ride) as well as the over-the-top, goofy portrayal of Dante by Momoa. Overall, comic relief is crammed down the throats of all characters, following a clear and present formula from start to finish. The result is an extremely lazy script, barely making it to the finish line with its simplicity and lack of intelligence.

It is no secret that the F&F movies push the limits of realism with their stunts and visual effects, and more recently have pushed far past the boundaries of physics! Just when you thought shooting a Pontiac into outer space was the bar for ridiculousness, Fast X finds ways to up the ante, including delivering an atomic bomb to the Vatican, driving down the side of a water dam, and many other physically impossible moments. I had to laugh at this quote from Alan Ritchson (Above the Shadows), as Aimes: “This team has defied the laws of physics on several occasions.”

Vin Diesel in FAST X ©Universal Pictures

It just goes to show that the producers of the franchise know they can do just about anything for these last few installments and the crowds will flock to the circus show. Gone are the days of crisp storytelling, and Fast X doesn’t even attempt to offer any sort of coherent plot. For the action junkies who go for sight and sound, the basics are certainly there. I can certainly commend the film’s soundtrack, which is always on point with the finest hip-hop/rap collaborations. But beyond the eye candy and engaging music, Fast X is a complete dud and a missed opportunity.

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Adam Vaughn is a graduate of the Film & Moving Image program at Stevenson University, with a focus in Cinematography and Production. He also has a minor in Theater and Media Performance. Adam works as a freelance photographer and videographer, focusing his craft on creating compelling photographic and cinematic imagery. Adam is excited to join the Film Festival Today team and explore the world of cinema and visual arts.

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