Written by: Chris Morgan
Starring: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster
When a series of films looks like it’s headed towards a meaningful conclusion but loads of money remains to be made, you just need something important enough to bring them back. Even if it does not make narrative sense and betrays character arcs, more money must be printed, which ultimately sums up the existence of Fast and Furious 6. Luckily, it has just enough fun action sequences to justify itself.
Living off their heist winnings from Rio, Toretto (Vin Diesel) gets notified that Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) is alive and part of a dangerous covert group hunted by Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson). With the hope to bring Letty back, Toretto reunites the crew to stop this group from their evil conspiratory ways.
You almost have to scoff at the reason why they made this film considering how beautifully well Fast Five concluded. It tied up nearly every loose end in the franchise but they could not leave so much money on the table. Letty is now back after the belief of her being murdered, which propelled the entire plot of 2009’s Fast & Furious. Instead, they retcon her fate as to having survived the attempted murder and now cannot remember anything about her past life. If this kind of plot sounds familiar, it may ring a bell as a plot device used in soap operas on how to bring back a beloved character. Ultimately, it feels cheap but aligns very well with the type of seriousness this film wants to portray, and the sequences within it only further confirm the belief.
Now in London, Toretto and his crew are now teaming up with Hobbs in his pursuit to track down Owen Shaw (Luke Evans). A refreshing spin on the antagonistic relationship they shared in the previous film. Having Toretto and Hobbs working as allies makes for an impenetrable duo but this villain certainly puts them to task for what they can handle. Shaw has his own unit as well and they essentially represent the evil versions of Toretto’s crew, which has similarities to other shows and movies that have used a similar tactic as a threat, and for the most part, it all works. Despite the cheapness of this film’s inception, the quality of the ridiculousness matches the level of fun this franchise promises.
With each film in the franchise having its main set piece, Fast and Furious 6 has its endless runway plane sequence, which may be the best of them all. Composed with individual battles occurring all with the singular purpose of stopping a plane from taking off, the way this gets filmed displays so much quality. All of the action remains clear and what the stakes are as danger looms with each misstep these individuals take. Serving as the real cherry on top of what level of believability this franchise wants to show as a whole seeing as no runway in the world could possibly accommodate the length and time in which this plane attempts to take off. Often the butt of jokes but the creatives here could care less seeing as they crafted a truly thrilling sequence worth the price of admission alone.
The main emotional core of this feature comes from the relationship of Toretto and Letty, as the former goes out of his way to remind the latter of their past relationship. Everything with Shaw becomes secondary to Toretto as getting back the love of his life matters more. Bringing back Letty did not feel earned but the result shows a wonderful relationship between this pair in the way they display their love in a manner not seen in the previous films. The love they have was made prominent before but not to the extent to which they share with Toretto trying to remind her of their shared past.
Despite the plane sequence and the emotionally touching moments held between Toretto and Letty, Fast & Furious 6 sticks out as being the most forgettable film in the franchise thus far. It has moments of undeniable quality and the ridiculousness that comes as part of the experience but when thinking of these films as a whole I often forget about this one. As it stands between the zenith of Fast Five and the emotional juggernaut, Furious 7, it just gets lost in the shuffle as a good installment but not one of the more impactful ones.