Can you believe the “Fast and Furious” franchise has been around for 16 years?
It’s still going as fast and as furious as ever. “The Fate of the Furious” (opening Friday) is fun, according to the early reviews from critics trickling out, but with Dom (Vin Diesel) turning on the family he’s so obsessed with talking about all the time, the new movie takes a darker turn than any of the other seven films in the franchise.
It also takes things to the next level. The eighth installment is getting generally positive though somewhat mixed reviews (it has a 75% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes as of this writing). But while it may not be the best of the franchise, fans will delight in plonking down money to see a scene in which Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson catches a torpedo with his bare hands (yes, really). Oh, and there’s a submarine chase in the Arctic. Because after seven “Fast and Furious” movies, cars and tanks are not enough.
Here’s what the critics are saying about “The Fate of the Furious”:
It’s exactly what fans of the franchise love and expect.
“A soap opera that just happens to cost millions of dollars and feature souped-up sports cars jumping over submarines.” —Time Out
“The Fate of the Furious provides plenty of the high-octane escapism and ridiculously elaborate vehicular mayhem fans of the series expect.” —IGN
“A dazzling action spectacle that proves this franchise is far from out of gas.” —Variety
Some agree that after eight films, the franchise is getting a little tired.
“The plot twists suggest the kind of games that 11-year-old boys put together on the playground during recess, with women in peril and so many different parts for everyone to play that you begin to lose track of who everybody is.” —The Wrap
“If you’ve spent the last sixteen years investing in the family and their ragtag tapestry, you might find yourself a little disappointed.” —Collider
Jason Statham and Dwayne Johnson, both newer additions to the franchise, keep it interesting.
“Thankfully, it’s frequently also much funnier and lighter on its feet than previous outings, and a lot of that credit goes to Statham and Johnson, whose love-hate bromance feels like the real core of the movie.” —Entertainment Weekly