You know those movie series where you feel like you’ve grown up with them? For a lot of you, that will be the legendary “Harry Potter” franchise. For me, it’s “The Fast And The Furious.” I like reading about wizards but no matter what I do, I’m never gonna get a broom to fly. Cars, on the other hand, is something I can tangibly do something with. Granted, I can’t take apart an engine and put it back together but I can drive like nobody’s business.

I love cars. I love crazy car scenes. I love things that go “boom.” This is my kind of movie. If you’re looking for Academy Award performances and story, this might not be the movie for you so don’t get your panties in a bunch. This is a popcorn movie in all its fantasticness so don’t get it twisted. In case you’ve somehow managed to evade all previews, here’s a small taste of what this movie’s about courtesy of Wikipedia :

With the police in pursuit, fugitives Dominic “Dom” Toretto (Vin Diesel), Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker), and Mia Toretto (Jordana Brewster), escape to Rio Di Janeiro, Brazil. The trio realizes that they will have to pull off their biggest job yet–stealing from the crooked businessman who controls Rio–to earn their freedom, but not before being chased by the leader of the most elite FBI agency, Luke Hobbs. (Dwayne Johnson) After escaping from the initial confrontation with the FBI agent, Dom realizes that he will need to assemble his team Han Lue (Sung Kang), Roman Pearce (Tyrese Gibson), Tej Parker (Ludacris), Gisele Harabo (Gal Gadot), Tego Leo (Tego Calderón) and Rico Santos (Don Omar), to pull off this heist.

Before I get started into what I think of “Fast 5,” I’m going to give you a rundown of what I thought of every movie in this series so far.

The Fast And The Furious

This is the one that started it all and it was GREAT!!!! I couldn’t remember seeing anything that came close to it. I had just sold my beloved 1999 Honda Civic EX coupe and I instantly regretted it when I saw this movie. Being a broke ass teenager meant I had to make hard decisions like buy food or trick out my car. Buying food always won but I consoled myself by buying street car magazines.

This movie started an instant love affair. It had it all – storyline, grit, cars (gotta love that sweet RX7) and awesomeness.

2 Fast 2 Furious

I think this was the best one so far. The cars were SICK, the car scenes were insane and the cast was great. How can you go wrong with Ludacris, DEVON AOKI, Jin tha MC and Tyrese? Paul Walker just added to the eye candy. Eva Mendez wasn’t bad either (I’m not a huge fan).

In case you haven’t figured it out, I watch these movies for the cars first and the story second. I like this one better than “TFATF” because everything was flashier. The story was more polished and the stars shined. The cars…the cars were divine. I love me the RX7. Come to mama.

Tokyo Drift

Here is where the franchise drifted into The Territory Of All Things Sucky. Lucas Black was not a good choice. I don’t understand why they would do that. The story was dumb and the acting was lukewarm. The only reasons why I even remotely like this movie are :

– the insane drifting scenes. I super love.
– SUNG KANG!!!!!! [fan girl scream]

That’s it.

Fast & Furious

….omg, why did I waste precious hours of my life watching this crap…. The only reason why I watched it was a sense of loyalty to the series. Truth be told, I didn’t like anything about it. In fact, years later, all I can remember is how much I disliked it, I hated the cars (I don’t like American muscle cars) and there was something about a tunnel. Oh yeah. Michelle Rodriguez died.

You know what else I don’t like? It’s kind of confusing to keep track of the timeline for this series. They don’t go in order. As far as I can tell, the sequence of events is as follows :

The Fast And The Furious
2 Fast 2 Furious
Fast & Furious
Fast 5
Tokyo Drift

I’m pretty sure that’s how it goes. I could be wrong but that’s just how confusing everything is.

This movie was for the fans! They brought back everyone who was awesome and then some. Paul Walker AND Vin Diesel AND Ludacris AND Tyrese AND SUNG KANG!!!!! Jordana Brewster is gorgeous! None of these people look like they’ve aged a day since the TFATF.

The Rock….I mean, Dwayne Johnson, was great! What cracked me up are his lines (“Of course I’m right.”) and the fact that he’s almost always glistening and dripping sweat. I’m not complaining. I’m just saying. His fight scenes with Vin Diesel were amazing. It’s just two beef cakes whaling on each other. I half wished for a People’s Elbow or the People’s Eyebrow. THAT would’ve been so awesome. I hope he’s a repeat character.

Speaking of muscles, I think they should rename this movie to “Fast 5 – The Gun Show” and I’m not referring to the heavy artillery used to blow up the baddies. I’m talking about muscles. It seemed like every guy in this movie had major guns represented on his arms. Again, I’m not complaining. I just sat back and enjoyed the view.

You really couldn’t ask for a better cast in this particular movie. Sure, all the characters had history to some extent with each other but you could really feel it by watching them interact. It didn’t seem like acting. I felt like I was the silent partner sitting in on a meeting on how to do something super illegal. The only thing I did not like was how cheesy certain scenes are. The right hand monkey for Reyes was too much and was overkill in most scenes he was in. I could’ve done without that. The directing was also kind of choppy.

Know what else I could’ve done without? The lack of epic car scenes. “Fast 5” was heavy on story and light on the driving.

“Fast 5” is the rebel child if “Ocean’s Eleven” and “The Italian Job” were to have an illegitimate child.

I appreciate them trying to give me a movie with a good story and tension and all that good stuff….but I’m watching a movie called “FAST 5.” Gimme my racing cars.

I felt cheated. There was a part where Dom and Brian needed to get their hands on an agile car. They go to the local car scene meeting area and it was decided to use Dom’s American beast of a car against the gorgeous blue Porsche. I was so excited to see just how Dom’s Charger would beat the pants off of the Porsche….and was let down. The next thing I see (literally) is the arrival of both cars in the secret hideout. WTF?! WHERE WAS MY RACING SCENE?!!! Bring back the RX7!!!!

Overall, I liked the movie because they brought out all the heavy hitters together in one movie. That, like I said before, was for the fans. It’s what made the movie for me. Sure, I sorely missed the drifting, the racing and getting to drool over cars. In that way, I felt cheated. However, I’m hoping for more of that in the 6th installment,

Oh yes. One last thing. If you watch this movie, do yourself a favor. Sit through the initial end credit sequence and prepare yourself for a “Like, whoa” moment.