The Fast and the Furious Rob Cohen
Published Jun 01, 2001Man, "Point Break" was a kick-ass movie. Disagree? Just break it down and try not to see the light. You have Keanu Reeves, pre-pre-"Matrix," post-"Bill and Ted's," acting all tough and vulnerable and shit, in fact, it is disputed whether he mutters a single "wow" in the entire movie. You have Patrick Swayze, now that's one sexy man, and did you see him throw that roundhouse kick? Man, he can (dirty) dance and fuck shit up, yo! You have "Tank Girl," um, Lori Petty, who is sexy even when she whines, and considering her voice, that's pretty dam sexy. You have Gary Busey, yeah, that's a problem, but he did give us spawn of Busey, who kicked righteous ass in "Starship Troopers," so he did something useful. Hell, you even have the token musician turned actor playing a surf-thug (isn't that an oxymoron?) in Anthony Keides. The point (break)? Well, someone loved "Point Break" so much (and, after rechecking the aforementioned arguments, justifiably so) that they decided to remake it and re-title it "The Fast and the Furious."
"The Fast and the Furious" is almost an exact replica of "Point Break" in every way; from the plot (undercover cop trying to crack an outlaw ring set against a fringe culture and falling in love in the process) to the characters (tough guys, hot chicks, good tunes and good beer) to, well, everything (it even has the same freakin' ending and plot twists!) There are subtle variations on the theme, however. Instead of the high-impact, death-defying world of surfing (yeah, that's right, surfing. You ever see a surfer get bitten by a shark? Shark's don't fuck around, yo!), we have the death-defying, high-impact world of illegal street racing (hey, it must be cool, Playstation has made a couple games on the subject), which basically translates into lots of cool looking cars and lots of women who like cool looking cars. We have the always intense, yet restrained Vin Diesel playing the role of Brody (Patrick Swayze's character). Sure he's not as philosophical, but he makes up for it in a Rollins-like intensity, plus he's pretty terrifying looking. We have some jibrone named Paul Walker, doing his best Keanu, "I've just been hit in the face with a frying pan and must block out the pain while saying my lines" Reeves impression, and you can bet he's seen the "Break" a time or two. We have Ja-Rule taking the place of Anthony Kiedis, but Ja's no DMX, yo, "where's my dogs at?" And we have cars and racing instead of surfboards and surfing. Dig? Good. Sure it's not original, hell, it's not even that good, but if Vin Diesel is within earshot, it's the best movie of the summer. Well, next to "Point Break," of course.