The poster says “All roads lead to this,” and the latest movie in the Fast and Furious franchise brings the series current with an after-credits scene featuring a pivotal plot point from the series’ most time-forward movie, The Fast and Furious 3: Tokyo Drift. Previews revealed the return of Letty Ortiz (Michelle Rodriguez), who appeared to die in Fast and Furious (the 4th movie in the series), and FaF 6 brings all of the heavy hitters together under one title for an action-packed cat and mouse chase that pits Dominic’s squad against a formidable team of counterparts.
After stealing $100-million dollars in Fast Five, Dominic (Vin Diesel) and crew relocate to various areas around the world where extradition laws won’t force them into custody. Brian O’Connor (Paul Walker) and Mia Toretto (Jordana Brewster) welcome a baby, while the rest of the scattered teammates live out their dreams and deal with their newfound riches — mo’ money, mo’ problems, as the saying goes. While money has given them comfortable lives outside the States, thoughts about finding home begin to weigh heavy on O’Connor’s mind — thoughts the other members share. The opportunity comes when Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) shows up on Dominic’s doorstep with photos of an alive-and-well Letty, a surprise that spurs the crew back into action to bring a family member back into the fold, while saving the world at high speeds.
The team agrees to help Hobbs in return for pardons all around, and they’re tasked with finding Owen Shaw (Luke Evans), a former British Special Forces soldier. The mission won’t be an easy one since Shaw’s team is stacked with expert drivers, trained fighters, and ruthless killers. The stakes are raised even higher when the team finds out about Shaw’s quarry — attacks on convoys net him components for a dangerous weapon called Nightshade. The high-speed chases and races, on foot and in cars, leads to several epic set pieces involving highways, hundred-foot drops, and the longest runway in the world. Though the ending seems a little tacked on with a clumsy but predictable plot twist that involves Shaw holding O’Connor’s child and Mia captive as a bargaining chip for his own freedom, there’s enough elements that make this an enjoyable movie that wraps things up before the series finally comes current with a surprise appearance by Jason Statham for a leadup to Fast and Furious 7. FaF 6 is the series’ most solid movie, and it manages to bring the fun with a balanced thrill ride that tips dangerously close to the ridiculous at times. It stays upright long enough to prove it’s got enough gas in the tank for another movie, and the casting of the next movie’s villain looks like it’s been a long time coming.