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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Vengeance Hits Home in  “FAST & FURIOUS 7”

   I don’t have friends.  I got family. 

These seven words have come to exemplify the very heart of the Fast & Furious franchise, both for the faithful team of characters on screen and the band of actors, filmmakers and crew who have grown as tight as any bloodline over the course of seven movies together.  At its outset, 15 years ago, no one could have foreseen that the destiny of this story about a team of street racers in East L.A. would transform into one of the most popular and enduring motion-picture serials of all time. 

Now, “Fast & Furious 7” arrives as the crowning achievement in this ongoing saga—the best, biggest and most fulfilling Fast & Furious movie yet.  For every person in the Fast & Furious family—those on screen, those behind the camera and those who count themselves among its vast and varied fans around the world: This one is special. 

In 2000, a modestly budgeted film with a cast of up-and-coming young actors began production.  Inspired in part by a Vibe magazine article on street-racing clubs, the action-thriller chronicled the exploits of a crew deep in the underground racing scene of East L.A. who dabbled in low-level heists to fund a passion for modified turbocharged street racers.  The audacious saga of young guns who live and drive by an outlaw code would become “The Fast and the Furious,” the sleeper summer hit of 2001 that racked up $207 million at the worldwide box office.  

 
Over the course of six films that have successively stoked passion in an ever-expanding, die-hard audience and an astounding $2.4 billion in receipts, Universal Pictures’ record-smashing homegrown franchise has become the studio’s most-profitable and longest-running.  Impressively, on social media platforms, fan following for the movies and cast has grown into the biggest of any active franchise. 

With family firmly rooted at its core, the Fast & Furious series has evolved into a touchstone for moviegoers following these compelling characters, whose journeys continue to unlock and reveal surprising emotional depth.  It has escalated into a phenomenon that has taken the street-racing outlaws to pull off nearly impossible feats in far-flung locales from Japan, Mexico and the Dominican Republic to Brazil, the Canary Islands and Great Britain. 

Now, with “Fast & Furious 7,” this crew heads across the globe for one last ride together in their most gravity-defying and emotional adventure to date.

Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges and Jordana Brewster return to form a furious team of seven family members united in purpose.  They are joined by Fast fan favorites Elsa Pataky and Lucas Black, as well new additions to the ensemble including Jason Statham, Kurt Russell, Nathalie Emmanuel, Djimon Hounsou, Ronda Rousey and Tony Jaa. 

Fast & Furious 7” picks up more than a year after Dom’s (Diesel) and Brian’s (Walker) crew has returned to the States with their pardons.  We find them transitioning into life on the right side of the law, but home has taken on a surreal quality.  Dom tries desperately to reconnect with Letty (Rodriguez), while Brian struggles to acclimate to suburban life with Mia (Brewster) and their son, and Tej (Bridges) and Roman (Gibson) celebrate their freedom by living the playboy dream.

Unbeknownst to all, however, danger has come in the form a cold-blooded British black ops assassin with a score to settle.  Beginning his reign of terror with the brutal murder of Han (Sung Kang) in Tokyo and the attempted assassination of Hobbs (Johnson) in L.A., Deckard Shaw (Statham) is systematically hunting down those took out Owen (Luke Evans), his little brother, during their last mission.  

When Shaw blows up the Toretto house, the family’s very symbol of sanctuary given to our crew to regain their freedom, Dom must turn to a high-level government operative (Russell) for assistance.  Our heroes’ only hope is to get behind the wheel again and secure an ingenious prototype tracking device for the U.S. government.  In return, they’ll use it to locate the ghost that is Shaw before he can kill again.  And as they form a tighter band than ever: The Fast & Furious 7—Dom, Brian, Hobbs, Letty, Roman, Tej and Mia—they will face their greatest threat yet in places as far away as Abu Dhabi and Azerbaijan…and as familiar as the streets they call home. 

Fast & Furious 7” welcomes director James Wan (“The Conjuring,” “Insidious”), where he is joined by a behind-the-scenes team led by producers Neal H. Moritz (“Fast & Furious” series, “21 Jump Street” series), Vin Diesel (Fast & Furious series, Riddick) and Michael Fottrell (“Fast Five,” “Live Free or Die Hard”). 

  Fast & Furious 7” opens across the Philippines on Black Saturday, April 04 and will be distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.


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