When I saw the first trailer for Fast & Furious 6, the one with the cable cutting vehicles in half across the highway, the formula-format armored car flipping other cars over it, and Vin Diesel smashing his car out the front of a crashing cargo plane, I laughed out loud. It was such a blatant ploy for my action-movie dollar (okay, six dollars) that I found myself unable to say "no," even though I expected the film to be stupid.
I kind of want the six dollars back. I definitely want the two hours and ten minutes back.
For starters, those moments in the trailer were the high points in the film, and played so prominently in the trailer that after a certain point in the movie I knew what was going to happen next.
"Ah... this is the part where a tank busts out of that truck."
"Okay, we're coming up on the big jump across the divided freeway bridge. Gee, I wonder if these two main characters will survive it?" *eyeroll*
"Hey... the scene with the plane hasn't happened yet. Well, I guess they're going to just let the bad guy go so we can have one more chase."
In fairness, a trailer without those elements in it wouldn't have put me in a movie seat, but the trailer did destroy any semblance of suspense for me.
What did the movie do right? Well, Gina Carano didn't get much dialog, and the dialog she DID get she was able to deliver convincingly. After Haywire I suspect folks realized that she is a fantastic physical performer who needs to work on her acting chops for another 5,000 hours.
Where did the movie lose me? Well, time and again we are treated to scenes of destruction in which the human cost should be quite high -- bystanders, police officers, other drivers -- but at no point do we count that cost. Our heroes, who have military support, never look around and say "these guys have killed FIFTY PEOPLE, so maybe we should call in a drone strike instead of chasing them around in sports cars."
But if you're going brandish movie physics and expect me to believe some of our heroes' car crashes were survivable, maybe you think I'm also going to believe that the press and the general population will just quietly wring their hands at the destruction wrought upon their fair city.
The plot was passable. The acting was reasonable. The action was easy to follow. And yet I rolled my eyes, shifted uncomfortably in my seat, and left the theater disappointed. Somehow I failed to set my expectations low enough. My big hope was that the movie, whose poster says "all roads lead to this," was going to be the capstone in the franchise. Or maybe the headstone.
Nope. They set up a sequel just before the credits roll.