Justin Lin


The film F9 wrote at the top of my list. The ninth part of the “Fast and Furious” series, in response to a scene seen in trailers and ads. On the vine, like Tarzan This is a film of the “Oh, yeah, why not?” kind. James Bond meets Road Runner cartoons in this cross-over. As a prisoner on a commercial aircraft, John Matrix murders the dictator’s goon with a neck snap as the jet prepares to take off, then climbs inside a landing gear housing and descends into a swamp conveniently situated at the end of the runway? That happened in “Commando.” As in “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom,” when the heroes jump from an airplane that has crashed, inflate the raft on the way down, and then land at an angle on a snowy mountain barrier where they are unhurt, then slalom down till they reach a river?


Dom Toretto’s long-lost brother Jakob Toretto (John Cena) is the focus of “F9.” As Dom and Letty are living off the grid with their son, Roman (Tyrese Gibson) tells them that Mr. Nobody’s (Kurt Russell’s) agent Cipher’s (Charlize Theron, introduced in “The Fate of the Furious”) plane was shot down by a rogue agent. While dressed as though they were heading to a barbeque, Montequinto’s group searches through the wreckage. Jakob took Cipher to his employer, a young, wealthy Northern European lunatic Otto, who believes responsible for the accident. A top-secret gadget that can control the security networks of every nation on the globe is Otto’s goal, and he plans to obtain and build both parts of the device himself. He also has a father, who is only mentioned, but never seen by the character.

Afterward, the espionage element becomes much more complex. On the other hand, Diesel and Cena take the whole “lost brother who turned heel” thing very seriously. They treat it as if it were a significant opera. Although Cena and Diesel have been hilarious in previous productions, they weren’t required to grin in this one, so I suppose this is the most honorable and dangerous way to play it. Kudos to any actor prepared to appear stupid, which is a continuous risk in this series. All the time, it’s gloomy and stormy. When it comes to scowling, grinning, and jaw-flapping, Cena becomes a little boring. When Dom and Jakob finally face up, you’ll probably wish that the movie would hurry up and get to the significant showdown that ends All Family Business. In a World Wrestling Entertainment kind of manner, the characters’ last moments are poignant.

You can tell Justin Lin liked leather pants because he keeps Charlize Theron in them the whole film. In his sad grandeur, Diesel manages to keep the whole thing together. His deep baritone and sorrowful gaze move me. Lin pictures him as if he were a posthumous statue of himself. How much has Dom changed throughout Diesel’s tenure as Dom is mind-boggling? Diesel’s Rocky Balboa and Indiana Jones are Dom and Dom, respectively. As an antihero in the first film, he was good when the situation called for it (like his other great recurring character, Riddick). Diesel began to seem more significant, older, and sadder at some time, maybe after his final picture with the late Paul Walker.

He kicks a lot of arses. A sequence in which Dom battles a dozen men with just his bare hands appears in the film. Lin switches to an overhead view of the fighters heaped on Dom like children piling on an adult at one point in the brawl. Dom has slowed to a standstill. Is he dead, or is he still alive? No way, Jose. Just wait and see. Neither the persona nor the franchise can be shattered.