Review – Furious 7
This review was first published in BMA Magazine.
Since the Fast and Furious franchise became self-aware during Furious Five each sequel became more outlandish than the last, and the stakes got lower as the characters continually shrugged off death. Sure, the spectacle is entertaining, but it has been void of tension. Furious 7 has a heightened sense of mortality giving the film stakes for once, born of tragic circumstances due to the passing of Paul Walker, handled deftly by director James Wan.
Dominic Torretto (Vin Diesel) and his crew (Walker, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson) separate after defeating an international terrorist, Owen Shaw (Luke Evans). But now, Shaw’s brother (Jason Statham) is out for revenge.
Hurricane Statham sweeps through Furious 7 aggravating the crew with a series of showdowns that allows Wan to construct jaw-dropping action sequences. Wan does an astounding job of making every punch, crunch and gymnastic car matter.
Furious 7 still has a creepy male gaze, particularly when it comes to the way women are gratuitously filmed, but at the film’s heart there’s a bittersweet struggle between the way cinema allows for a spectacle of immortality like Furious 7 and mourning for the loss of Walker. Wan even lightly breaks the fourth wall to allow the actors to use their characters to pay respect to Walker in an honourable way that has emotional resonance. Easily, the best in the series so far.
The Popcorn Junkie