2 Furious delivers ass-over-teakettle action
Wow. Believe it or not, calling a movie “brainless” can be a compliment. Sometimes all one needs is two hours of autopilot in an air conditioned theater, and the day is made.
Personally, during the summer I’m really not in the mood for something like The Matrix Reloaded and its self-conscious pseudo-philosophical posturing. Give me some curvy eye candy, a pounding soundtrack and police cars going ass-over-teakettle, and I’m one happy camper. Throw in a tin bucket, a propane torch, a bare belly and a rat, and I’m positively giddy.
What we have here is the Einstein of brainless summer popcorn crunchers, a hip-hop take on The Dukes of Hazzard.
The first entry, The Fast and the Furious, was a lotta fun but just tried too hard. Too much nattering about the metaphorical aspects of street racing. Plus, it made Vin Diesel a name. So much so that he couldn’t be bothered to return for the sequel.
Good for us.
Director John Singleton (Boyz in the Hood) takes over the wheel here, and he seems to realize that no one pays the bucks to see something called 2 Fast 2 Furious and hear rap stars wax philosophical on the meaning of life. So Singleton just plain cuts to the chase. And chase. And chase. Sure, there’s a plot here … sort of: Disgraced ex-cop (Paul Walker) is coerced by the feds into going undercover to make a money run for a big-time drug dealer so they can bust the guy. Along the way, he hooks up with a friend (Tyrese Gibson), and there’s a deep-cover, sexy fed (Eva Mendes) working in the bad guy’s inner circle to help them in. Lots of screeching rubber, shifting gears and crashing cop cars ensue.
Sometimes dialogue sneaks in, but not enough to slow things down. After one extended chase sequence, I had to go out of the theater and have a cigarette. I woulda given this one the orgasmic popcorn box, but the climax sorta peters out.
Near perfection for what it is, though.