Siena Yates is an entertainment writer for the New Zealand Herald.

Movie review: The Fate of the Furious

The latest instalment of the Fast and the Furious franchise is totally ridiculous - in the best way imaginable.

Is it award-winning, thought-provoking cinema? No. But is it a great time? You're damn right.

You want to see Vin Diesel rip apart a beat-up old car with his bare hands, light it on fire and race it in reverse right off a cliff? You got it.

You want to see Michelle Rodriguez drive a car on two wheels and fight her way through a military base? You got that too.

You want to see Jason Statham parkour his way through a prison brawl while The Rock literally knocks people over like he's ten pin bowling? Mate, you didn't even have to ask.

Dwayne Johnson as Luke Hobbs. Photo / AP
Dwayne Johnson as Luke Hobbs. Photo / AP

And that's all without mentioning an out-of-control car chase involving tanks, a bright orange Lamborghini, someone sledding on a car door, someone else (points if you can guess who) diverting a torpedo with their bare hands, and a friggin' submarine chase.

ON. ICE.

Without giving away any major plot points, the film follows the formula of those that came before it, only this time seeing Dom (Diesel) turn against his "family" for reasons you'll have to wait to find out.

It also sees Jason Statham return as Deckard Shaw, so we can all enjoy some thinly-veiled bromancing between him and The Rock's Luke Hobbs as they throw absurd insults and threats at each other to hide their obvious attraction to one another. (Am I right?)

The team assembles at a frankly impossible base full of confiscated vehicles. Photo / AP
The team assembles at a frankly impossible base full of confiscated vehicles. Photo / AP

Speaking of bromances, Tyrese Gibson and Ludacris' Roman and Tej continue their onscreen love/hate affair, slinging wise-cracks back and forth throughout the entire film, ensuring things stay light and fun, even when they're not.

And The Rock even manages to slip in a random haka with a girl's soccer team, making for a funny, light-hearted - if not somewhat cringe-worthy - film moment.

And representing the women, Michelle Rodriguez is as completely badass as ever as Letty, and Nathalie Emmanuel's Ramsay rolls her eyes at all the male chauvinism for us, so we don't have to. Meanwhile, Charlize Theron plays the icy, take-no-prisoners villain Cypher with a chilling approach to "motivating" Dom.

The Fate of the Furious has basically everything you could want from this franchise and a bit more, stepping up the story-telling and giving a beautifully subtle nod to the late Paul Walker.

Cast: Vin Diesel, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Jason Statham, Michelle Rodriguez, Charlize Theron and more.
Director: F. Gary Gray
Running Time: 136 mins
Rating: M
Verdict: Utter chaos makes for an awesomely good time.

- NZ Herald

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