TV Party Tonight! #99

TV Party Tonight! #99

Thursday, 07 October 2021

F9: The Fast Saga
[4K/Blu-ray combo]

We love the number 9!

If there ever was a global hit franchise, it’s the Fast and the Furious series. They were certainly the underdog at first, but the franchise knew how to play it smart. We’re used to thinking of movie successes as being domestic, but these guys are thinking globally. First off, they knew to include continental superstars which would attract a worldwide audience. Sure, this came out in pandemic times, but it grossed over $100 million in the US and over $500 globally. Domestic is small potatoes for the Fast franchise. Second, they knew how to grow the series to a level that reflects what the public wants. The cast has remained relatively consistent, but they’ve grown from DVD thieves into almost full-blown Marvel superheroes. That’s what the average moviegoer wants these days, and the franchise knows that. So, the series is now 20 years old, and has remained interesting to moviegoers. That says a lot.

Fast 9 knows to play the hits, even though they might be playing on a subconscious level at this point. There’s a new baddie threatening the world and only this team can save the day, Dom Turetto always is the moral compass, family is the focus (even though it only applies to the traditional cast and not newcomers, like babies), comedic beats along with comedic-beat-acting is plentiful, and goodies turn into baddies and vice versa. Also, Corona is drunk at the end. Upping the ante this time, the team goes into space. How they do it is up to you to figure out. Also, Dom now has a long lost brother who might just be the perfect foil for him. Who’s side is he really on? As always, there are cameos galore. John Cena or course, but Hellen Miren pops up not necessarily to drive the plot forward, and Cardi B is in there maybe to cue a spinoff for the series.

While this movie literally goes into the stratosphere to push the boundaries of the series, it’s the special effects of the action sequences that shine here, especially the protracted use of giant magnets in the car sequences. Some pretty phenomenal stuff happening there. It looked great on TV and I’m sure would have looked even better on the big screen. Of course, a series like this deserves the 4K treatment, and this package includes an extended cut of the film (!), audio commentary by the director/writer team, as well as featurettes on the making of the movie, the cars involved, and our new antagonist John Cena.

As far as blockbusters go, this series is at the very top, and it’s always interesting to watch the best of a thing. The lifespan alone of Fast and the Furious is amazing, and it sounds like we have a few more to come. Lord knows where they’ll take us to next. Another dimension?

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