Review by: Jack Foley | Rating:
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES: Inside 2 Fast 2 Furious; Actors Driving
School; Supercharged Stunts, Supercharged Scenes; Making music
with Ludacris; Outtakes; Deleted scenes; Tricking Out a Hot Import
car; Actor spotlight; Car spotlights; Prelude to 2 Fast 2 Furious;
Feature commentary; DVD-ROM features. Animated anecdotes.
IF the Summer is all about brainless movies which provide plenty
of eye candy without much else, then 2 Fast 2 Furious fits the
Loud, energetic and hopelessly stupid, this brash sequel to Rob
Cohen's sleek original arrives in a cloud of tyre smoke and disappears
just as quickly, leaving nothing substantial in between.
Set some time after the events of the Vin Diesel vehicle, the
movie finds Paul Walker's disgraced former cop, Brian O'Connor,
now making a living for himself on the street racing circuit in
His past catches up with him, however, when the Feds offer him
the chance to clear his record if he helps to infiltrate the elusive
world of Miami-based drug dealer, Carter Verone (Cole Hauser).
Though reluctant, at first, O'Connor then teams up with his childhood
friend, and now ex-con, Roman Pearce (Tyrese Gibson), in a bid
to bring Verone down, hooking up with a beautiful undercover agent
(Eva Mendes' Monica Fuentes), who may have switched sides.
Given that The
Fast and the Furious was, in itself, a pale imitation of Point
Break, and that 2 Fast 2 Furious is, stripped bare, a pale imitation
of a pale imitation, you have to ask yourself what is the point...
But then John Singleton's movie was made with only one thing
in mind - raising the stakes in the action levels, and it is during
the driving sequences that the film really comes alive.
Opening with a ridiculously OTT street race, the movie then takes
the format of a computer game (such as Driver or Grand Theft Auto)
by setting its protagonists a number of high-speed tasks to be
completed before either the cops close in, or Verone runs out
And for the most part, such sequences are largely fun, even if
they do ultimately descend into the type of stunts that The Dukes
of Hazard would be proud of.
The problems really begin when the engines stop and the talking
starts, which is where Michael Brandt and Derek Haas' script is
really exposed for what it is - utter drivel.
Singleton's direction, too, is so obsessed with playing up the
eye candy that he seems to forget about providing any characters
worth caring about - hence, the likes of Walker, Gibson and Mendes
(especially) look good, without really doing anything.
Walker, in particular, is sold short, turning in a hopelessly
bland hero whose vocabulary largely consists of the word, 'bro',
while Gibson seems content to act rebellious, without any of the
mean streak that Vin Diesel brought to the original.
In fact, as cliched as this next line might sound, without Diesel,
2 Fast 2 Furious seems curiously short on gas when it comes to
anything other than the driving.
But then that is probably what the audiences are paying to see,
and Singleton's action sequences are as slick as any of the gear
changes he frequently focuses on.
A chase halfway through, in which a group of thugs are asked
to race towards a package, is particularly thrilling, as is the
finale involving hundreds of vehicles, while the hip-hop laden
soundtrack provides a suitably rousing score.
Go in with your brain in neutral, and you're likely to have some
fun with it, but anyone expecting something a little bit more
for their money should steer well clear.