"Guys, they got a tank"
Pedal to the Medal
I was never really a fan of the Fast and Furious series. For a quick recap, The Fast and The Furious was cliched and boring and honestly should have never gotten a sequel. 2 Fast 2 Furious was just too stupid.. I mean, the title after all. Tokyo Drift... I never saw. Fast and Furious was the worst, excruciatingly boring and forgettable. Fast Five was good during the action, decent the rest of the time. So, yeah, a fan I was not. So, is the sixth time the charm? Well, actually... Direct by Justin Lin, who directed the last 3 movies and written by Chris Morgan (Wanted), the film follows Dom (Vin Diesel, xXx) and Brian (Paul Walker, Eight Below) as they team up with agent Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson, Snitch) and his new partner Riley (Gina Carano, Haywire) in order to stop dangerous criminal Shaw (Luke Evans, The Raven) and rescue mysteriously-alive Letty (Michelle Rodriguez, Machete) in exchange for pardons, which would allow Brian to return home with Mia (Jordana Brewster, Chuck) and their son. Reteaming with Roman (Tyrese Gibson, Transformers), Han (Sung Kang, Bullet to the Head), Gisele (Gal Gadot, Knight and Day) and Taj (Ludacris, Gamer), the team faces off against dangerous criminals in a fight for their freedom. Sounds good to me.
Sixth Times the Charm
As I'm sure not many people are surprised, the characters in the Fast and Furious franchise tend to be a little very one-dimensional. In the last movie, they were made better by the likable actors, but here, I actually... found myself caring about them? At this point, it seems as if everyone here is actually friends. The chemistry between the team feels real and it makes for a great contrast to the lack of chemistry in Shaw's literal evil version of the hero team. Unfortunately, most of that lack of chemistry is due to Evans just not being menacing enough to make for a good villain, which tends to suck most of the drama out of scenes. Rodriguez could probably kick his ass, so the fact that she's supposed to be threatened by him is a bit unbelievable. The rest of the cast though is great, even in some smaller roles this time around. The other plus is that humor seems to have been thought about a lot more, as this film is also the most light-hearted in the series. The plot is pretty throwaway, but it is suitable for getting the audience hooked in and keeping them following the action. Speaking of that...
Act Two Awesome
A central problem with the Fast and Furious franchise is the fact that the films usually had a good action scene in the beginning and a good one at the end but little else to fill up the middle of the running time. And thankfully, this sixth entry fixes that problem. For the first time, Fast and Furious isn't just so-bad-it's-good or a stupid guilty pleasure. It's an honestly good action movie. For once, most of the action is not spoiled by the trailers. The ramp cars are easily one of the coolest inventions in a movie in a while and the opening action scene with the is great, especially because director Lin actually let's the audience see the action, usually not resorting to shaky cam. Usually.
On top of that, the street race in the middle is honestly fun and keeps the movie going. But the tank scene takes the cake. That and the airplane scene, Oh, and the fight scene in the subway. Yes, there is a lot of action and it's all especially good. Even the major logical errors, such as how a tank can keep up with sports cars and how the airport runway must be about 60 billion miles long are easily forgotten about when the audience is having this much fun.
Fast and Furious 6 is by far the best movie in the series. A light-hearted tone keeps the movie very entertaining, with the great chemistry between the cast and the admriable plot helping out as well. The film is filled with humor and action, actually thinking to put some action scenes in the second act. Some of the action scenes will be up there with some of the best of the year, with a climax to rival the suit warfare of Iron Man 3. The only real flaws is the film's lackluster villain and occassion dull moments. But they don't last long. Also, the post-credits scene? Well, let's just say I am totally in for the sequel now. Fast and Furious 6 gets 5 stars out of 6.