Directed by: Justin Lin
Written by:Chris Morgan
Starring: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster, Michelle Rodriguez, John Ortiz, Laz Alonso
Released: April 16, 2009
Grade: B

The Fast & The Furious was one of the biggest success stories of 2001. It made a lot of money at the box-office and was well received by the public. In my initial review, I described it as being "edge of your seat stuff".

Since then, the series has had a few "accidents" and to use another metaphor, has spent a fair amount of time in the repair shop. Paul Walker was the only member of the cast to return for the sequel (2 Fast 2 Furious) and the less that is said about The Fast The Furious: Tokyo Drift, the better.

The good news is that this franchise is back on the open road and is travelling at full speed. As the advertising points out, all of the original cast have returned for Fast & Furious. None of them have gone onto super stardom since the first flick so perhaps they’ve returned for the pay cheque? Maybe they’ve reunited to do a little reminiscing.

Whatever their motivations, their appearance has gotten the public off their backsides and into movie theatres. When it opened in the United States last week, it made $71m in its first three days. That’s the biggest opening since The Dark Knight in July 2008.

When I went to the preview screening, my attention was largely on the action scenes. The special effects are obvious but it’s still exhilarating. The problem I now have is that I’m a little sketchy about the plot. Maybe I wasn’t paying enough attention? Maybe there wasn’t any story to begin with?

All I’ll say is that Dominic (Diesel) and Brian (Walker) are both out to capture a nasty Mexican drug dealer. They have differing motivations but are equal in terms of their unrelenting passion. They throw their bodies around with reckless abandon. Their juiced up cars go through the ringer as well. Presented with the same situation, I think I would have died 20 times over.

The best parts of the movie are when the actors keep their mouths shut and the action does the talking. The dialogue is laughable in places. But like I said, there are some very cool action sequences that more than compensate. One of the highlights is a car chase through an underground tunnel on the Mexican border.

Vroom, vroom!