It’s Worth the Ride
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw Opens August 2nd
By Britt Argo
We first meet Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) in Furious 7 (2015). Meeting again in The Fate of the Furious (2017), the duo start off on opposite sides and then begrudgingly are paired together. To say it’s a contentious relationship would be an understatement. However, Hobbs and Shaw are forced to rely on each other to fight the baddies.
What it’s about — In Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, the duo forms an unlikely alliance to battle against a cyber-genetically enhanced supervillain, Brixton (Idris Elba). Villain Brixton gets his hands on a bio-threat virus that could wipe out half the world’s population. Rogue MI6 agent Hattie Shaw (Vanessa Kirby) steals the virus to prevent him from unleashing it. When the mission is compromised, the agency reaches out to the two best trackers, her brother Deckard Shaw and Agent Hobbs, to help her keep the virus safe. When Brixton discovers they are harboring Hattie, he calls them out on the Jumbotron in Piccadilly Circus (London) and challenges them to a war if they don’t return the virus.
Of course, they resist working together. Shaw would prefer to take care of his “family business” on his own, but Hobbs insists that when it affects the “fate of the world” it becomes his business. Shaw’s delightful mum (Helen Mirren) pleads with him from prison—he must look after his sister. Finally, Hattie gets through to them that if the three of them don’t team up, billions of people will die. Hobbs is immediately taken with Hattie, and refers to her as “one of the toughest, baddest, most capable women I’ve ever encountered.” Now teamed up, the trio go through a high-octane barrage of attacks from the army of mercenaries and untouchable, bulletproof “Superman” villain Brixton. Car and motorcycle chases in the streets of London, repelling down a skyscraper, jumping out of airplanes, escaping exploding buildings—it has it all. But, in order to fight the ultimate baddie, they need the ultimate arsenal of guns and fast cars.
Hobbs decides to get “off the grid” and bring the fight to his home turf, luring the baddies to his family home in Samoa. They enlist his mom, brothers, and local friends for, as momma calls it, a “Samoan ass whooping.” When he finds out momma got rid of all his guns in the shed, they decide to fight old school, with the traditional ceremonial Samoan sticks, clubs, and mallets. They must do whatever it takes to save the world. Do they win? No spoilers—you’ll have to see the movie to find out who prevails. But it’s worth the ride!
Why you will love it — This film is different in tone. It still has fast cars and the high-energy action you love from the series, but unlike serious Dom (Vin Diesel), these two have more of a cat and mouse comedic banter. Their pairing is great for this movie. Dwayne Johnson always portrays his characters a little lighter, more fun-spirited, even in dire “save the world” situations. Even though Jason Statham’s character never smiles and his delivery is always very matter-of-fact, there is never anything menacing about him. The two characters, despite their bickering, work well together and have real buddy chemistry.
Gotta love the over-the-top action scenes! In the streets of downtown London, we get the trio scaling down a high-rise building, eluding a high-octane motorcycle, and sliding under the truck bed with their hot rod. It’s eye candy, pulse-racing action sequences, although totally implausible and outlandish, keep you glued to the screen. Brixton’s motorcycle is enhanced, it can ride without him and he can pop on and off as he needs. It’s very cool to see the gadgets and slow-motion flying cars grazing past bullets and avoiding exploding buildings. And yes, in Samoa, they do chain the truck and cars to a helicopter and fly dangling over a cliff to try and thwart Brixton’s escape. This last big, blockbuster car chase is worth seeing the movie.
Do you need to be a fan of The Fast and the Furious to understand this movie? No, but it helps to re-watch Furious 7 and The Fate of the Furious to be introduced to the characters in Hobbs & Shaw and to understand just why they hate each other so much. This movie does stand alone—gives us a whole new villain. So if you jump in and only see this one, you’ll still enjoy it.
FAST & FURIOUS PRESENTS: HOBBS & SHAW IMAGES COURTESY OF UNIVERSAL STUDIOS
Britt Argo, an avid movie fan, sees an average of 150 movies a year in the movie theaters. She is the marketing coordinator at Aurora Cineplex at Area 51: Aurora Cineplex and The Fringe Miniature Golf—5100 Commerce Parkway, Roswell. 770-518-0977. auroracineplex.com and a51fun.com.