Fan-favorite characters Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham), receive their own spin-off in Universal Picture’s Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. The film opens up with an exciting sequence involving Deckard’s sister MI6 agent Hattie (Vanessa Kirby), who is on a mission to retrieve a super virus. Unfortunately, terrorist Brixton Lore (Idris Elba) wants the device for himself, which results in Brixton having to eliminate all of Hattie’s team, forcing Hattie to go on the run. Forced to work together by the CIA to find Hattie and return Snowflake, Hobbs & Shaw must work together to not only to save Hattie, but also the free world.
I can still recall seeing the first Fast and Furious movie in the summer of 2001 as well every sequel. While I generally had fun with the films, I never considered myself as a diehard fan.
This all changed in 2011, with the franchise fifth film, Fast Five. Series writer Chris Morgan introduced the character of Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) into the franchise and the films got better. I now look forward to the sequels primarily due to the old school action hero charisma that Johnson brings to the series. Furious 7 saw the introduction of Jason Statham’s, Deckard Shaw as an equally skilled antagonist to the heroes of the series. It was only natural that the writers would find a way to team up the characters of Hobbs & Shaw, given the positive response of the characters from audiences.
Director David Leitch, who has a background as a stunt and fight coordinator, was the perfect choice to helm Fast & Furious Presents Hobbs & Shaw. Whether it’s hand to hand combat, car chases, or gun battles, Leitch directs the film with a style that harks back to the movies of the late eighties and early nineties. Leitch worked closely with writer Chris Morgan to ensure everyone in the primary cast has a moment to shine and show off the shape they got into for the movie.
Kudos must also go to Chris Morgan’s script and his choice to do a split-screen introduction of our heroes. When we first see Hobbs & Shaw screen, the visuals for each man show character traits that cater to their character. As the films move along, some of these traits later come into play. Chris Morgan’s script also provides some additional backstories for both Hobbs & Shaw, which diehard fans of the series will appreciate. The chemistry between Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) is natural and provides numerous one-liners. I also enjoyed the duo’s banter with our female lead Hattie (Vanessa Kirby), and our villain Brixton Lore (Idris Elba). Kirby portrays Hattie as a nonsense female, who doesn’t need her big brother Deckard to take care of her. On the flip side, Idris Elba’s, Brixton Lore proves to be a formidable foe for the duo. It was great to see the character of Brixton Lore, get the best of Hobbs & Shaw numerous times.
As much as I had fun with Fast & Furious Presents Hobbs & Shaw, there were issues that I had. I would’ve trimmed down the run time by at least twenty minutes or so, as the film began to drag in its third act. There are also two cameos from two A-List stars in the movie, which are apparent stunt casting, given the celebrity status of the two actors. While the cameos were funny, I can think of at least two other actors in each role, that may have been better.
Great chemistry from its leads, awe-inspiring action, and humorous one-liners, Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, is an excellent close to the summer 2019 movie season.