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Review Fast & Furious (2009): In hindsight one of the strongest parts in the entire franchise!

gene: action, thriller, racing

For a long time I considered this fourth part the odd duck in the franchise. This was before it went cuckoo in part 5 and every film after. I managed to get a hold of the 4K /UHD version and decided to revisit the film I thought I liked the least.

And in all honesty there certainly are a few flaws with this film. But for the most part it's a solid entry. Actually compared to the last two I think this one is superior. So what are the things that are right? Paul Walker and Vin Diesel are paired up again. Their friendship might be a little troubled and strained but that is not uncommon for brothers. It will hardly surprise you they will patch things up. They do have great chemistry which makes it fun. This fourth part is also very ambitious. Instead of dealing with little street races or a plain drug dealer they are now getting involved with taking on a Mexican cartel. That being said there is an event tied to this where Vin Diesel could have shown some range. And for some reason neglects to do so. I know a lot of you say that he has no range is very limited as an actor. This is not entirely true. He is capable of more but he rarely does roles that differ from his established action persona. Go watch Find Me Guilty. He is absolutely brilliant in that film. In any case this is a missed opportunity. Does it matter much in the grand scheme of things? Not really. It's just a plot element to move things forward which in turn is an excuse for some cool racing sequences. They actually made it look like even the main characters could die. The bling bling is gone but the raw racing power is ever present and definitely the main draw. There is even a mystery element woven in. Nothing spectacular but good enough to keep you guessing. Compared to most twists in the franchise this is the most probable and least ridiculous and therefore tolerable.

I also think the pacing is right. It's not super fast but it's never slow either. I was simple able to enjoy the whole film without ever getting bored. Naturally you will have to overlook certain things like Brian now suddenly is a FBI agent. Before he went rogue, he was a simple cop. And he was kinda on the run. Yet gets hired as an agent at the FBI? Surely this is impossible. But it does work for the wonderful dynamics between him and Dom so it's something I was willing to not make a big deal of.

Overall in hindsight I would regard this one of the strongest parts in the franchise. Funny how my view on this has changed significantly. 

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