Michael Scott

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Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw


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Movie: :3stars:
Video: :5stars:
Audio: :4.5stars:
Extras: :4stars:
Final Score: :4stars:



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Movie

I’m still amazed at how far the 2001 film The Fast and the Furious has come from its simple roots. Back then it was nothing but a street racing heist movie that spawned a couple of mediocre sequels, but somehow the franchise came out of the ashes reborn, changing it into a high speeds crime fighting ensemble series. Every movie since the 4th one has gotten bigger, with a larger cast, and more crazy as they progressed. By the time with got to Fate of the Furious (the 8th movie) they had almost gotten to the point where the only way to get any bigger and any crazier was to go to space. Well, instead of going to space (still not ruling it out for the 9th or 10th film in the franchise proper), the powers that be decided that Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham were too big to be side characters in Vin Diesel’s powerhouse series. So why not make a film about them doing their thing by themselves? Perfect. We get to see my favorite action stars team up and fight Idris Elba. HOWEVER, I was not expecting the sheer amount of lunacy and over the top sci-fi action in comparison to their characters and scope of The Fast and the Furious franchise proper. This is just a plain NUTS film that has wall to wall action, The Rock and Statham wise cracking at each other, and Black Superman (not kidding). It’s a strange combination, and doesn’t always work, but the movie lambastes you with so much cheesy action and classic one liners that it’s hard not to begrudgingly enjoy yourself in the slightly over bloated 2 hour and 17 minute film.

Hobbs (Johnson) and Shaw (Jason Statham) are going to be forced to work together outside of Dom’s team of super drivers this go around. The two are called into action by CIA agent Locke (Ryan Reynolds, doing his best Deadpool smart mouthed routine) when Shaw’s sister, Hattie (Vanessa Kirby) seemingly goes rogue. Hattie WAS an MI-6 agent up until now, but after trying to lock down a super virus her team ends up dead and she goes off grid. The only thing is, she’s NOT the criminal. Mysterious cybernetically enhanced super soldier Brixton (Idris Elba) had actually killed her team, forcing Hattie to inject the virus into herself as a human containment device, and run. Now she’s on the run with a shadow tech organization on her tail, and the only two who can save her are the very people who may kill each other in the process. Her brother and the hulking Luke Hobbs.

As the two harangue each other with barbed verbal jabs and begrudgingly help the rogue Hattie, Shaw and Hobbs come to realize that they have a much bigger enemy. An enemy who has unlimited funds and technology to do what they want, and a gigantic super soldier (e.g., black Superman) who has a taste for revenge over what Shaw did to him years and years ago. Now it’s time to go back to their primal roots, and utilize the power of family in the only way Hobbs knows how. His home of Samoa and the island family (slightly estranged) of warriors who still believe blood is thicker than water.
.
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Hobbs & Shaw is a giant orgy of guns, knives, nonstop action and tons of special effects, all at the expense of plot and character development. The thing is, I’m under no pretense that The Fast and the Furious films have been some bastion of intelligence and story building. They’re fun, but they always were more style over substance, so I knew full well going into this film that we were going to get more of the same. However, I was NOT prepared for the sheer amount of sci-fi level action and lunacy that was going to unfold. While Hobbs and Deckard Shaw were always “supermen” in reality, the action in Hobbs & Shaw just flings what ever semblance of reality and believability right out of the window and just gleefully goes for broke. We have LITERAL super soldiers with cybernetic enhancements, car chases where motorcycles ride along sides of buildings, and a hilarious scene where The Rock (sorry, “Dwayne Johnson”) actually holds a flying helicopter in place with one arm while holding onto a car with the other!

There’s not much time for character development, and the lunacy doesn’t stop at the action. Ryan Reynolds actually bookends the film by introducing Hobbs to Shaw once more, and be ending the film TWO of the three end credits scenes (yes, there is 3 hidden scenes during the credits), where he hams it up as Deadpool without his mask. Not to mention Kevin Hart showing ups a wise cracking air Marshall. Despite all the craziness, and despite the sheer lunacy of it all, the saving grace of the film (besides some pretty cool action) is the chemistry between Statham and Johnson. The two are wise cracking to the max throughout, and their little verbal banter is probably the best part of the whole movie. When you’re about to give up and turn the movie off, they settle into some jokes and banter that just brings a smile to your face and lifts the whole thing back up to eye level.




Rating:

Rated PG-13 for prolonged sequences of action and violence, suggestive material and some strong language




Video: :5stars:
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Wow, all I can say is WOW! Hobbs & Shaw looks absolutely incredible on Blu-ray. This is one perfect looking Blu-ray and the Arri Alexa shot, and 2K finished master shows off everything one could hope for. Skin tones are natural, fine details are astounding (just look at the close ups when The Rock hulks up in his Samoan gear before the face off with Brixton), and the colors just pop with deep saturation. There’s a cool blue tone to most of the film, but once we get out to Samoa there’s a more earth and golden hue to the image. Primary colors pop off the screen, such as blood spray and clothing, with incredible intimate detailing along the kevlar armor and suits that adorn our two heroes. The blacks maintain a very healthy depth to them, and even without the use of HDR they feel incredibly rich and vibrant without any major artifacting.








Audio: :4.5stars:
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Both the Blu-ray and the 4K UHD contain the same Dolby Atmos track, and it is most certainly a rock-em sock-em, blistering action track to the extreme. Just like the movie, things are big and in your face, with jaw dropping LFE performance that just shakes the walls. Gun shots ring out with heavy authority, and explosions literally cause your pant legs to be flapping if you have the sub power. Surrounds are in constant activity as the mix isn’t exactly shy about throwing sounds all over the place. We have sound sides, rear sounds, front sounds, and during the cacophony things just bounce around the entire sound stage. Overheads are used with great aplomb, ranging form the helicopters overhead, to the shrieking of jets, or the falling debris that lands on top of a military transport truck Hobbs is driving. This is one wicked sound track, and while it’s just shy of “the best of the best”, it’s incredibly close and a serious treat to listen to.







Extras: :4stars:
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• ALTERNATE OPENING
• DELETED/EXTENDED/ALTERNATE SCENES
• JOHNSON & STATHAM: HOBBS & SHAW - Why this film duo works so well together on and off the set.
• PROGRESS OF A FIGHT SCENE WITH DIRECTOR DAVID LEITCH - From script, to storyboard, to finally arriving on set and working with cast and crew, this piece will illustrate the progression of fight scenes from concept to execution.
• PRACTICAL ACTION - Any film featuring Jason Statham or Dwayne Johnson is sure to be action packed and feature some over-the-top fight scenes. For the film, each fight sequence was carefully choreographed and shot ahead of time for the actors to use in training and ultimately in shooting the scene.
• THE BAD GUY* - Fans can explore what makes the ultimate baddie, as well as Brixton's backstory, casting Idris Elba, special effects for his cyber features and what makes him tick.
• THE SISTER* - This piece will highlight Vanessa Kirby as Hattie Shaw - she may be Deckard Shaw's little sister, but don't be fooled, she's equally capable of kicking just as much as he does.
• HOBBS' FAMILY TREE* - This character piece will highlight the extended family of the Hobbs heroes. From Hobbs' daughter, mother and brothers, take a high-energy, behind-the-scenes look at their time on set.
• THE MATRIARCH* - With her brief appearance in HOBBS & SHAW, audiences are reminded of the matriarchal might of Helen Mirren as mother Shaw. This piece will feature Mirren in her return to the role.
• NEW FRIENDS - Featuring hilarious moments with the cameos featured in the film, this piece will showcase some of the best moments from their days on set.
• ELEVATOR ACTION* - The elevator scene in the trailer – yes, you know the one. This is just one of the crazy stunts in the film – now fans can see how it was done.
• STUNT SHOW AND TELL* - Along with film clips and stunt vis, this firsthand look at some of the key sequences in the film will peel back the layers of the stunt process.
• KEEPING IT IN THE FAMILY: A CONVERSATION WITH ROMAN AND DWAYNE* - In this intimate conversation, Roman Reigns and Dwayne Johnson discuss their personal relationship, coming from a long lineage of wrestlers, and what it's like to be working side by side on a project so close to Johnson's heart.
• BLIND FURY* - Dwayne reveals the inspiration behind one of the film's key scenes – his grandfather!
• DWAYNE AND HOBBS: LOVE AT FIRST BITE* - We know how important family is to Dwayne Johnson, and his French Bulldog Hobbs is no exception. In this fun piece, fans can learn more about Dwayne and man's best friend.
• FEATURE COMMENTARY WITH DIRECTOR DAVID LEITCH












Final Score: :4stars:


Hobbs & Shaw is not the best of the Fast and the Furious franchise, and not even the best that could have been made, but it is strangely hypnotic to watch despite the drastic tonal change from the series proper. However, Statham and Johnson are completely hamming it up to level 15 out of 10, and having a grand old time with the giant spectacle, and that alone makes it worthwhile. This is the very definition of a movie where checking your brain at the door is a necessity, and is basically one giant spectacle with massive scope, and very little intelligence. Universal’s Blu-ray disc is simply superb, with great video, great audio, and a whole host of extras. It’s not exactly a thinking man’s movie, but it’s fun enough for what it is.


Technical Specifications:

Starring: Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Jason Statham, Idris Elba, Vanessa Kirby, Helen Mirren, Eiza Gonzalez, Eddie Marsan
Directed by: David Leitch
Written by: Chris Morgan, Drew Pearce
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 AVC
Audio: English: Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 Core), French, Spanish DD+ 7.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Studio: Universal
Rated: PG-13
Runtime: 137 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: November 5th, 2019
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Recommendation: Fun, Cheesy Watch

 
Last edited:

tripplej

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Thanks for the review. I have to revisit this franchise. Only saw the first one and possibly the second..
 

Michael Scott

Moderator / Reviewer
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Arizona
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apologies for a slight mistake in the audio/video sections where the video score was in the audio section. It's been fixed as of now
 
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