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Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Movie
Director(s): 
In Theatres: 
Aug 02, 2019
Grade:
C+
Running Time: 
135 minutes

Hobbs & Shaw marks the first official spin-off for the Fast and the Furious franchise, featuring two of the films’ most entertaining characters teaming up to save the world from impending doom. That’s all you really need to know because let’s be honest, you’re not seeing these films because of their captivating stories. You’re seeing these films to watch The Rock pull down a flying helicopter with nothing but pure muscle and other outrageously impossible stunts. The Fast and the Furious franchise has evolved into the definition of a popcorn blockbuster, and Hobbs & Shaw is no different as it takes the action to new levels of extreme while ignoring all laws of physics and common sense.

 

DDS agent Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and assassin/mercenary Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) are forced to team up when Shaw’s sister Hattie (Vanessa Kirby) is framed for stealing a new deadly virus that has the potential to wipe out humanity. The two must put aside their differences for each other and work together to find Hattie before Brixton (Idris Elba), an augmented super soldier from Deckard’s past, finds her first and uses the virus to cause terror across the globe.

 

The film is at its best when Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham share any scenes together and trade insults and/or punches. The chemistry between the two of them is hilarious, and it’s no surprise that the franchise keeps putting them together. They make anything work, whether it’s The Rock repelling down the side of a building while Statham conveniently takes the elevator or them arguing while being tied down and tortured by Idris Elba. As far as spin-offs go, these two make the most sense.

 

That being said, I wish Hobbs & Shaw would have fully embraced the ridiculous nature of the action rather than trying to piece together a convoluted plot. I, and probably most fans of the franchise, stopped caring about the story many films ago. Sure, somebody has to mention family a dozen or so times, but that’s about it. Hobbs & Shaw gets bogged down trying to explain everything, from Brixton’s past to the secret organization he works for. There’s a lot of exposition in the film, which contributes to is way too long running time.

 

The new additions of Vanessa Kirby and Idris Elba are great for the franchise and each carry their own weight throughout the film. Kirby has no trouble kicking all kinds of ass, although the romance plot between her and The Rock feels forced and cliche. Elba skips all logic and is a literal superhero/villain thanks to his cybernetic enhancements and an awesome tricked out motorcycle that does some bonkers driving on its own. There are also a couple of surprise cameos in the film and while one of them works, the other falls flat and feels unnecessarily shoehorned into the film.

 

Overall, Hobbs & Shaw is a nice dose of adrenaline that is sure to entertain audiences for a brief moment before quickly wearing off. The action is on par for the franchise, but it’s slowed down by an overly complicated story and feels about as long as the runway in Fast & Furious 6. Both Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham do all the heavy lifting and for the most part deliver an action-fueled ride.

Matt Rodriguez
Review by Matt Rodriguez
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