Even if you've never actually seen a Fast & Furious movie, you've almost certainly glimpsed enough of the blockbuster franchise's posters to know it's got something do with car culture. You may even know its (fictional) roots are in LA's modding and illegal street racing scene. But eight main movies in, to the say that the Fast Saga's all about excessively tuned cars is like saying Lord of the Rings is all about a piece of jewellery - sort of true but massively missing the point once you've invested in the story.
The fact is, after the first three Fast & Furious films - The Fast and the Furious (2001), 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003) and the Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) - stuck to the underground racing theme like freshly warmed Yokohamas on asphalt, 2009's Fast & Furious effectively rebooted the Fast Saga. What emerged from the shop was a glossy, globe-trotting spy/heist movie centred around the first three films' coalescing crew of petrolhead misfits, led by gravel-voiced Vin Diesel as Dominic Toretto.
It was a genius move, and ever since the Fast Saga picked its lane as Bond-lite with heart, humour and fat exhausts; it's been unstoppable.
How do you rate the Fast & Furious saga so far?...
F9 - The Originals
F9's new featurette takes us 20 years into the past to show just how much Fast & Furious evolved between its inception and its transformation into one of the most beloved franchises of all time.
Opening to the explosive race between Brian O'Conner (Paul Walker) and Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel), set at the climax of 2001’s The Fast and the Furious, the new featurette displays some of the family’s most memorable moments. As a way to show the long road they traveled ever since the franchise hit the gas pedal and never looked back, the featurette also brings quotes from the cast recorded before the first movie hit theaters.
We have Diesel talking about how “we’ve never seen this culture in film”, when talking about how The Fast and the Furious depiction of street racing, while Michelle Rodriguez says she “would love to be a part of it for a long time”. Both actors had no idea, at the time, of how big the Fast Family would grow, and how central the franchise would become to the cinema.
At the end of the featurette, we also have Rodriguez talking about how the things that happen in F9 are a “gamechanger”, and Diesel telling how the new movie goal is to “defy expectations”. The 20-year jump between the interviews shows us just how much the Fast Family is still relevant for fans, in a franchise that evolves to keep the public entertained with amazing set pieces and explosive action.
F9 is the first film of a new trilogy that promises to bring the Fast & Furious saga to an end. The three movies will be directed by Justin Lin, who helmed the franchise for almost a decade with Tokyo Drift, Fast & Furious, Fast Five, and Fast & Furious 6. F9 will bring a new challenge to the family when Dom’s long-lost brother, Jakob (John Cena), joins forces with international criminal Cypher, played by Actor of the Week - Charlize Theron.
F9 is due for release at cinemas on 9th July.
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