I saw Furious 7 last night…and you should go see it too

furious 7Last night I trekked up to the garage space of Hot Rod to take a look at some cars. No, it wasn’t a peek at some of the oh-so-wonderful Roadkill projects, but rather a chance to eyeball three of the cars used in the latest installment of the Fast and Furious franchise; Furious 7. After a bit of food and car eyeballing, it was a short walk to a nearby theater to take in a slightly advanced screening of the film, which opens today.
If you’re a fan of ridiculous over-the-top (like… way over) action movies and all-things automotive (you’re here, right?), then you need to go see this movie.
If you think you’re better than this movie, I’m here to tell you that you’re wrong.

furious 7 challengerLet’s start this right off the bat by talking about the cars. They’re wicked. If I may use my old Boston-accent for a moment, they’re in fact wicked fucking awesome. There’s an old Charger that’s running on a lifted chassis with off-road tires and a suspension setup with loads of travel. There’s also an older Camaro running the same gear as well. A full-armored Wrangler gets plenty of screen time while also eating a lot of bullets.
There’s that absolutely killer old Charger that has made its way into a number of the films, complete with its out-of-the-hood blower and glorious noise. An Aston Martin, Maserati, and Jaguar R-Type Coupe serve baddie duty, although the Aston gets a bit more screen time than the rest.
The cars are all tied to the people driving them, and they all fit well. They can also be used to fit the scenes, which is evident when the crew travels to Dubai and arrive in supercars (and a, ahem, 2015 Dodge Charger… because I guess Toretto needs to stick with his muscle cars?)
Speaking of the scenes, this is where you’re either going to love this movie or hate it… and if you hate it, then you hate fun. The crashes are larger, the action is bigger, and the stunts have veered into full-on video-game territory. Still, there’s a large number of practical effects taking place, including the one where they actually throw a few cars out of a transport plane.
It’s a fun ride right up until the end… when you realize both you, Toretto, and Vin Diesel are saying good-bye to Brian Spilner and Paul Walker. The last few minutes of the movie are dedicated to Paul, and I won’t spoil the visuals, but it’s a punch right in the Feels section of your emotions.
I didn’t know Paul Walker personally, but I did get to speak to him for 30 or 40 minutes a few years ago. We were both sitting on a rock on top of Pikes Peak, as he had just driven the pace car to start the race. It was clear right from the start that this was a man who genuinely loved driving anything with wheels.
We chatted about his various cars, and how he used to live in Huntington Beach (where I reside) but left it for Santa Barbara and was getting his ass kicked on the hills by 60 year olds while out cycling. He was competitive, but he was also a friendly dude with a warm smile. Our talk wasn’t that long in the grand scheme of things, but it left an impression on me, and I thought about it when leaving the theater.
There’s definitely going to be more with this franchise… but it won’t be the same with out the buster.

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  1. Bradley Brownell Avatar
    Bradley Brownell

    I LOVED this movie. More than any of the others. It’s a definite contender for my favorite of the year (and that’s saying a lot, because there’s a new Avengers this year…). It felt like a serious movie. Not serious, serious, but you know what I mean. It felt like a James Bond or Mission: Impossible style movie with off the wall stunts, crazy action, and some insane plot devices.
    The moment Brian mentioned his Tunafish, I was gone. I was a little blubbering baby, all sniffles and fits. I kept it together for most of the action sequence, but as soon as that was over and the crew was doing their traditional “let’s wrap the film by sharing a Corona somewhere”, it was all over. Waterworks.
    I have even less of a connection with Paul than you did, but having spent the last 15 years watching this stupid franchise, I was still invested in the character and the actor behind it. There was a point about 4 years ago that I drove the car that killed the man. Not *A* Carrera GT, but *THE* Carrera GT. Somehow, that weirdly makes me feel like I was a part of it? I can’t really explain that. No lies, I cried a bit when I knew the actor was gone, and it all felt a thousand times worse now that I know his character is gone, too.
    As I said when I exited the theater: Goodbye Brian Earl Spilner. Enjoy the tuna.

    1. Jeff Glucker Avatar
      Jeff Glucker

      I’ve become friends with two guys who used to work with him at AE (as in, they’re usually chillin’ at my pool having beers (my complex pool, not MY pool)).
      I understand exactly what you’re thinking.
      I can’t believe you drove that car, that’s nuts.

    2. quattrovalvole Avatar

      I too went to see this movie last night and had a really hard time to hold back during the last few minutes.
      I don’t care much for the first 3 sequels (the 2nd-4th ones), the 5th and 6th ones were so over-the-top but fun. But, it was the first one definitely left a mark on me. I was 10 years old when the first movie came out and as a kid who loves cars but know nothing of, I was easily impressed. Of course, re-watching that movie know makes me giggle at the absurdness of the story and the driving. But man, 14 years ago, I didn’t know all that and I had a great memory of watching that movie twice in theatre – once with my granddad and once with my dad.

  2. Maymar Avatar

    If I’m honest, I’m pretty indifferent to the earlier movies (although it’s been about a decade since I’ve seen any of them) – it wasn’t until the franchise really embraced the ridiculousness and got big with it that I cared. So I’ll definitely see this eventually.
    On the other hand, there’s a part of me that wishes it was Point Break that got six sequels, instead of Point Break on Wheels, or at least we got a crossover with Patrick Swayze working with Paul Walker or something.

  3. Marto Avatar

    The one in plaid is not wearing any pants. Why?

    1. wunno sev Avatar
      wunno sev


      1. wunno sev Avatar
        wunno sev

        more furious

        1. Marto Avatar

          With plaid shirt’s hand placement it looks like the actor is taking a whizz. Cannot unsee.

    2. Bradley Brownell Avatar
      Bradley Brownell

      I believe she’s wearing very short cutoff Jorts.