And then there was eight… The time has finally come. It’s opening day of The Fate of the Furious and fans all over the country are anxious to see this for a myriad of reasons. You have fans of the franchise itself, Ludacris fans, Tyrese fans, Vin Diesel fans, and millions upon millions of people who are obsessed with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

The eighth installment in the Fast and Furious franchise brings us to Cuba where Dom and Letty (Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez respectively) are enjoying their honeymoon. While on the island, Dom comes across a woman named Cipher (Charlize Theron) who lures him into working for her. From there, the rest of the movie is simple: Get Dom away from Cipher and make it back for family dinner.

The film has your usual suspects from the last few installments, including Roman (Tyrese), Tej (Ludacris), and Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel), but has some new faces like Cipher (Charlize Theron) and Rhodes (Christopher Hivju, another Game of Thrones castmate w/Nathalie).

Coming from someone who thought the series should’ve ended after Paul Walkers’ Supra ride into the sunset, the film was actually pretty awesome. There’s lots of action naturally, there were plenty of explosions (not Michael Bay level so you can stomach them), and I was truly taken aback when I discovered Vin Diesel had only a handful of cheesy lines.

The writers did a good job plugging any possible holes in the storyline after bringing in new characters. The film and story run smooth, so even if you’ve missed a few films along the way you’ll be able to keep up thanks to the flashbacks that take place.

I don’t want to expose too much about the storyline because there are a few twists and a handful of surprises. But there is one thing I did notice: Cars, which were the focal point of the film’s existence in the beginning, have taken a backseat in this one. That’s not to say that they regressed on the type of cars they used, but if you remember in previous films, the antagonists illegal actions always revolved around cars. This is the first Furious film where cars were not the focal point of the movie. It seemed like they had one real race in the beginning just to cover the “car” aspect of the movie and then went on to other things. With all the new cars that are out now, you think they would’ve featured a few. Instead, you’ll see much of the same, with different paint jobs being the only change.

Even though I feel cars get overshadowed in The Fate of the Furious, I still give it an 8 out of 10. The stunts in the cars are cool and the fight scenes are legit. The best one is probably when the prisonbreak happens (so look for it). This is definitely one you’ll want to see this weekend… After you watch Atlanta United play Saturday afternoon.


-Jon J.

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