Fast Five (2011)

7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 8/10

Big cars, big action

Acting is still so-so, lots of suspension of belief

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Fast Five

Studio:  Original Film

Genre(s):  Action/Adventure

Release Date(s):  April 20, 2011 (Australia)/April 29, 2011 (US)

MPAA Rating:  PG-13


The gang’s all here and ready to party in Rio!

Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) is headed to jail and saved by Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) and his sister Mia (Jordana Brewster). Now, all three are wanted by the law and escape to Rio De Janeiro to lay low with Dom’s former partner Vince (Matt Schulze). When Vince reveals he has an easy job, Dom, Mia, and Brian find themselves targeted by Rio’s mafia boss Hernan Reyes (Joaquim de Almeida) and decide to turn the table on Reyes by bringing in Roman Pearce (Tyrese Gibson), Tej Parker (Ludacris), Han Seoul-Oh (Sung Kang), Gisele Yashar (Gal Gadot), and Leo and Santos (Tego Calderon and Don Omar) to rob Roman. Dom and Brian’s plans might hit a kink when agent Luke Hobbs (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) is sent to bring them in.


We’re supposed to sit in the car, not on it!

Directed by Justin Lin, Fast Five (sometimes called Fast & Furious 5 or Fast & Furious 5: Rio Heist) was a follow up to Fast & Furious in 2009 (but still a prequel to The Fast and the Furious:  Tokyo Drift). The movie received mostly positive reviews and big box-office returns making it one of the biggest moneymakers of the year.

The Fast and Furious franchise is a strange one. Rather than getting worse with age, many of the last few movies are better than most of the first films. Fast Five is no exception to this strange rule and continues off the success of Fast & Furious by being bigger and better than the earlier films.


You want a piece of me?

Fast Five is a heist film. Much like Ocean’s Eleven or The Italian Job, a group of professional criminals are brought together for a big score. The movie maybe isn’t as clever as the previous films, but it replaces its cleverness with high octane driving and action scenes.

The racing and cool cars is what you go to a Fast & Furious film for. The movie does have both. From the prison bus break-out, to the train robbery, to the unrealistic safe heist, Fast Five does have some fun action scenes. The actual plans for the real robbery seem a bit hazy before it is all ruined by the arrival of the Rock’s team, but the high energy chase scene at the end of the film is fun and has a twist…I just don’t buy that those cars (even if there are two of them) could pull that safe and swing it as much as they do.


There has to be better ways to rob a vault…

The film has most of the casts of the other films returning which includes characters from 2 Fast 2 Furious and Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift (sort of…as mentioned, it’s a prequel). The movie is aided by the introduction of Dwayne Johnson who does add some extra muscle to the cast. Most of the cast isn’t going to win any acting awards, but it is better than some of the other entries. The movie has Dom mourning the death of Michelle Rodriguez, but a post credit scene reveals that there might be more to her death than originally revealed.

Fast Five is a better entry into The Fast and the Furious series. I didn’t really enjoy the first three films, but this film is actually fun in an escapism film. I didn’t go into expecting much and got a bit more than I planned for. Fast Five is followed by Fast & Furious 6 in 2013.

Related Links:

The Fast and the Furious (2001)

2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)

The Fast and the Furious:  Tokyo Drift (2006)

Fast & Furious (2009)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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